A man who burgled the homes of two people at Kinmel Bay had done so to get money for drugs, a court heard.

John Trafford, aged 36, of Lon Olwen, Kinmel Bay, was jailed for three years when he appeared at Mold Crown Court.

One of his victims was an elderly lady living alone.

He had stolen jewellery in both houses, which were subject to untidy searches, and the jewellery was of great sentimental value.

Trafford admitted stealing cash and two rings worth £160 from a property in Denbigh Circle on July 10 and on August 17 taking a gold necklace during a burglary in Chester Avenue.

Judge Rhys Rowlands said that both burglaries took place when the occupants were out.

It was not the first time that he had burgled the homes of elderly people, he said.

It had a profound effect upon his victims.

Such offences not only affected the victims but also the wider community, he said. Neighbours became unsettled as well, he explained.

His case was aggravated by his previous convictions and he had been released on licence only a short period before the burglaries took place.

He faced a statutory three year sentence because of his record unless the court took the view that it would be unjust to do so.

“I am not of that view,” he said.

Prosecuting barrister Kim Halsall said that in the first burglary an elderly lady went shopping to Llandudno, returned to her three bedroomed detached house and found that an untidy search had taken place and jewellery had been taken, much of it of great sentimental value.

In a victim impact statement, she described herself as being “totally shocked” and she no longer felt safe in her own home.

She found herself constantly checking the windows to see if there was anyone outside.

In the second burglary, he got in through the conservatory and again jewellery of great sentimental value was taken.

The victim told how she was very upset that items she had and had worn for many years had been taken.

Arrested and interviewed, Trafford made no comment.

Sarah Yates, defending, said that the defendant had written a letter to the court in which he wholeheartedly apologised to the victims.

She said that he was anxious to break the vicious cycle of offending in order to get money for drugs and being imprisoned.