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Court remands teenage burglars

Three teenage boys – the youngest aged just 13 – were remanded in custody at HM Windmill Prison yesterday after they admitted burgling the offices of a local ship agent.

They were among a group of six teenagers who pleaded guilty after appearing before the Juvenile Court jointly charged with a burglary at Tarik Shipping.

The court heard how the teenagers stole two mobile phones having trespassed into the shipping agent on Thursday night.

The remaining three juveniles were granted bail pending the preparation of pre-sentence reports for all six.

The three who were remanded – aged 13, 14 and 17 – committed the offence while on bail in connection to unrelated burglary charges, prosecutor James Lennane told the court.

The Justices of the Peace hearing the case expressed concern they might re-offend and said they were “sadly forced” to opt for custody.

Their decision was met with an outburst from two of the juveniles in the dock, who head-butted the glass panes in courtroom and were escorted out by police.

The three juveniles had already spent the weekend in police custody having been arrested last Friday morning.

In court yesterday, five of the teenagers in the group also admitted a charge of obstructing police.

One of the youngsters was also charged with handling stolen goods on a separate occasion but denied the offence.

Defence lawyer Patrick Canessa, who represents several of the teenagers including one of those in custody, submitted that his client had learnt from his experience in jail.

Justin Rodriguez, representing another teenager on detention, urged the court to impose a 24-hour curfew instead of remand.

The bench took a break to deliberate its decision and on its return remanded all three juveniles.

“With defendants your age we always try bail and not remand,” a Justice of the Peace said.

“You were all here last week and committed further offences whilst on bail.”

“We have major issues and concerns of you committing further offences.”

The three other juveniles were released on £250 bail in their own recognisance.

A pre-sentence report was ordered and the matter was adjourned until September 11.

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