Woman is terrorised by burglar

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A man who terrorised a woman in her Whatlington Home has had his appeal for a lighter prison sentence thrown out by a judge.

Padraig Pearse Carty, aged 59, had developed an obssession with a former business associate.

Carty went to a house in Riccards Spring, Whatlington, near Battle, Sussex, where he believed the man lived, armed with a screwdriver and a pen-knife.

But, when he discovered he had moved, he demanded his current address from the new homeowner.

The 59-year-old, of Chestnut Walk, Bexhill-on-Sea, was jailed for five years at Lewes Crown Court after he admitted aggravated burglary.

He challenged his sentence at London’s Criminal Appeal Court, with his lawyers arguing it was ‘too long’ for his crime.

But his complaints were thrown out by three of the country’s most senior judges, who said his punishment was ‘not excessive’.

The court heard Carty had developed ‘some sort of obsession’ with a former business associate, after he felt he was unfairly treated in a deal.

He went to the house where he believed the man lived but discovered he had moved and a woman was living in the house.

Carty threatened her and demanded to know where the man had moved to, telling her he would come back and ‘get her’ if she gave him a false address.

Challenging his sentence, his lawyers argued the term was over the top considering his mental health difficulties and the fact no harm was caused to the woman.

But, dismissing his appeal, Mr Justice Lewis said the sentence was justified given the serious nature of the offence.

Sitting with Lord Justice Laws and Mr Justice Openshaw, he added: “The judge was entitled to reach the conclusion he did in circumstances where Carty entered the victim’s house armed with a weapon.”