A MASKED burglar who helped raid a convenience store of a cash machine containing £3,500 has been jailed.

Burnley Crown Court heard how Reece Mead was part of a three-man gang which raided the Premier Mini-Mart in Waterfoot.

During the burglary at around 4am on February 27, the thieves also stole £6,500 of cigarettes, £1,000 of spirits and £300 from the till. A further £3,000 damaged was caused to the shutter of the store in Burnley Road East.

Prosecuting, Stephen Parker said Mead was the only one of the three burglars who failed to wear gloves at the scene and handed himself. Mead refused to name his accompanies and they are still to be caught.

Mr Parker said: "There was a press appeal in relation to the incident. The police had some information that the defendant was involved.

"The defendant actually handed himself into Greater Manchester Police. He went to a police station in Rochdale. He said he was wanted.

"GMP couldn't find any record of him being wanted on their system. A search on their system found he was wanted in Lancashire.

"He was then interviewed by Lancashire Police. He made full and frank admission in relation the burglary. he wouldn't name his accompanies.

"He said 'me and a couple of mates did the burglary. I saw it online. I handed myself in because I wasn't wearing gloves and both my mates were. I didn't want to be stuck in a cell tonight when I was off my head. I wanted to have clean clothes on. So I thought I would hand myself in'."

Mead, 20, of Mardyke Cottage Bank Way, Rochdale, pleaded guilty to a single count of burglary.

Defending,Ellen Shaw said: "This is an individual who has mental health problems. These mental health problems lead him to being unable to work.

"When he sees other individuals doing things in a social environment that he is unable to do that leads him to offending to increase his financial means."

Judge Simon Medland QC sentenced Mead to 32 months in a young offenders institution.

Judge Medland said: "I take the view this is a very serious criminal offence. It is a multi-handed deliberately planned professional burglary where disguises were worn.

"You are 20-years-of-age and you have an awful criminal domestic and non-domestic burglary."