Police took more than a year to charge a Liverpool youth who with three accomplices broke into a beauty salon and convenience store at Prestatyn, a court heard.

Reece Owen, now turned 18 and a labourer, of Kirkby, left blood on a scratchcard and had been arrested by Merseyside police after a chase on foot the same night in August last year, Caernarfon crown court was told.

Officers had stopped the gang in a stolen Mini.

Judge Huw Rees told the teenager, who admitted two burglaries: "A striking feature of this case is you were arrested and interviewed on August 4, 2017. At the time you would have been 17. That lapse of time has meant the crown court at Chester had to deal with you for a separate matter.”

A 33 weeks custodial term was imposed, suspended for 18 months, with 150 hours unpaid work and rehabilitation.

He must pay £3,000 compensation to La Belle Femme salon which, according to the owner, had been “trashed”.