“Stupid” burglar who raided neighbours traced next door by footprints

Akin Akinniran

Akin Akinniran - Credit: Archant

A “stupid” masked burglar who broke into his neighbours’ flat was caught out when his wet footprints led them to his home next door.

Akin Akinniran, 30, clambered through the window of Mariamma Sesy’s home on November 4 dressed head-to-toe in black and wearing a mask.

But Ms Sesy, who lived next door to Akinniran in Swingfield House, Templecombe, Homerton, was so concerned about security she had set her own homemade burglar trap – a row of bowls filled with water under her kitchen window.

Last week he was sentenced to five years in prison by Judge Joanna Korner after pleading guilty to aggravated burglary at Snaresbrook Crown Court.

Ms Sesy ran into the kitchen and screamed once she heard the bowls smashing as Akinniran climbed through the window, but she did not recognise her neighbour.

Neither did her husband, who also came rushing into the room before Akinniran fled out of the front door.

But the couple found a six-inch silver knife in the hallway outside and took photos of a set of wet footprints leading to Akinniran’s front door.

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Police carried out DNA testing on the knife and arrested Akinniran, who now lives in Warburton House, Warburton Street, London Fields.

Akinniran initially denied the offence, but pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary at his preliminary hearing at Snaresbrook Crown Court last Friday.

Sentencing him to five years in prison at the hearing, Judge Korner told the court: “The police were very lucky he hadn’t done a runner”.

Priya Patel, for Akinniran, told the court: “This was an opportunistic burglary, he lives close by and he is unfortunately looking for work and is on benefits and he made a very bad decision – perhaps that it was the very next property to his indicates his desperation.”

She claimed Akinniran had never had any intention of using the knife, but only carried it because he had been threatened by other people in the past.

Judge Korner said: “The offence was committed at night and the terror that it must have caused the family cannot be overestimated.

“I’ve never seen anything so stupid as breaking into your neighbour’s flat and accept it’s a measure of how desperate you were for money.

“To break into a house is bad enough but to break in with a weapon which could have been used – although I accept you made no attempt to use it – is much worse.”

She continued: “As you must have realised, the offence to which you’ve pleaded guilty is one of the most serious offences.”