‘Re­venge’ raid left bistro with £48k bill

Kent Messenger Maidstone - - NEWS -

Two bur­glars broke into a restau­rant at night and caused around £48,000 of dam­age in “an act of re­venge”, Maid­stone Crown Court heard.

Wear­ing bal­a­clavas, Daniel Pope and an ac­com­plice hurled bar stools over the bar at the Hengist in Ayles­ford High Street, smash­ing bot­tles, and slash­ing fur­ni­ture. They fled on bi­cy­cles with just a bot­tle of vodka.

The restau­rant’s owner suf­fered fur­ther fi­nan­cial loss as a re­sult of hav­ing to close for sev­eral days, in May.

Re­peat of­fender Pope, 38, was caught af­ter he left be­hind a screw­driver with his fin­ger­prints and DNA on it. He ad­mit­ted bur­glary and crim­i­nal dam­age.

Paul Roach, de­fend­ing, said Pope, of Hunt­ing­don Road, Cox­heath, had no link to the vic­tim but was in­volved in caus­ing gra­tu­itous dam­age to help some­one else.

“He had no axe to grind,” said Mr Roach.

Jail­ing Pope for two years and three months on Fri­day, Recorder Gareth Branston said: “This was es­sen­tially an act of re­venge for some­thing I know not what.

“This is an in­ci­dent of ab­so­lute wan­ton de­struc­tion, caus­ing dis­tress to a num­ber of peo­ple and huge loss and dam­age to the prop­erty.”

Daniel Pope has been jailed

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