A BURGLAR caught breaking into a house was PAVA-sprayed by police.

Burnley Crown Court heard how police were called to Church Street, Haslingden, on September 12 to reports of a man wearing a blue top breaking a window of a property.

Prosecuting Sarah Magill said officers were originally given the wrong house number but when they went to the right address they found Basha Ullah inside.

Ullah ran to the back of the house and into the garden in a bid to escape. When an officer went to arrest him Ullah, of Manchester Road, Haslingden, raised his hand and made a fist so he was sprayed. PAVA is an incapacitant, pelargonic acid vanillylamide.

Ullah ran off but was seen crouching in the front garden of witness Amy O’Hara. When the 32-year-old walked away from the garden he left gold costume jewellery he had stolen from the house.

Ms Magill said that when police went to a property linked to Ulla they found him ‘washing his face frantically in the sink’.

When Ulla was arrested he initially told officers he was at his solicitor’s office when the burglary took place but later said he was at William Hill Bookmakers.

Ms Magill said officers went to William Hills to investigate Ullah’s alibi but when they couldn’t find him on CCTV footage from the time he claimed he was there they re-arrested him.

Ms Magill said: “He said he was unfit to be interviewed because he was off his head on Vicodin (pain-relief medication). He then gave a new account which was disproved.”

Police also matched footprints from the scene of the break-in to the plimsolls he was wearing.

In total Ullah stole £150 in cash from a safe, gold bangles worth £200, a gold ring valued at £100, several nose studs worth £100, a selfie stick and gold costume jewellery. Only the costume jewellery found in the garden was ever recovered and returned to the victim. Ullah, who has 19 convictions for 24 offences, pleaded guilty to burglary and attempting to break into the Super Pound Store, Haslingden, on November 23.

Judge Simon Medland QC sentenced him to 12 months imprisonment, suspended for two years, with a 30 day rehabilitation activity requirement and a three month curfew from 9pm to 8am. Judge Medland said: “People are entitled to feel safe in their own homes and entitled not to have their property damaged and pillaged by people who are on drugs like you were.”