A PROLIFIC offender was caught "red handed" after stealing from parked cars in Accrington.

Blackburn magistrates heard the owner of the second vehicle detained Bernard Rawstron and when police searched him they found a distinctive pair of gloves which had been stolen from another car in the neighbourhood on the same night.

Rawstron, 45, of Leach Street, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to two charges of theft from motor vehicles.

He was jailed for eight weeks after the chairman of the magistrates said his record did him no favours.

"You were jailed for identical offences seven months ago and jailed for the same less than 12 months before that," he said.

Catherine Allan, prosecuting, said Rawstron had 76 convictions for 188 previous offences. Following his last prison sentence he was still on post sentence supervision when he committed the latest.

She said the first vehicle had been parked in Steiner Street and as well as the gloves a bank card had been stolen.

After stealing from the second car Rawstron was challenged by witnesses. He said he was drunk and lost and wanted to get home to Blackburn.

"He was detained and police found the stolen property on him," said Miss Allan.

Mark Williams, defending, said that unusually for his client he had been drinking on the night.

"He has had significant problems with illegal drugs over a number of years but not alcohol," said Mr Williams.

"He is on methadone so is not stealing to fund his heroin habit.

"It seems he was trying to raise some money to get back to Blackburn."