Northern Ireland news

Suspected burglar of east Belfast home traced following social media post

The 25-year old appeared at Belfast Magistrates Court, where an application for bail was granted

A WOMAN whose home was broken into traced the suspected burglar following a post on social media.

As a result of the post, the woman arrived at the suspect's house - and had a pearl necklace which had been stolen during the break-in was handed back to her by the suspect's mother, a court heard today.

James Clarke, from Ashmount Park in east Belfast, has been charged with carrying out an aggravated burglary on April 16.

The 25-year old appeared at Belfast Magistrates Court, where an application for bail was granted.

A police officer said that on April 16, the female occupant of a house at Ashbrook Crescent discovered that her property had been broken into. A black-handed knife was left on a bed, and a Tommy Hilfiger watch and pearl necklace were stolen.

The officer said that after making posts on social media, the woman was "given a name" which prompted her to go to Mr Clarke's home. Once there, the defendant's mother "returned her pearl necklace to her and apologised" and Mr Clarke then "handed himself in to police."

Mr Clarke's solicitor asked Deputy District Judge Gerard Trainor to release his client on bail, which was granted.

He was ordered not to enter Ashbrook Crescent or have any contact with the injured party, to observe a 10pm to 7am curfew, and not to consume or be under the influence of any drugs other than those prescribed by his GP.

Mr Clarke's case was listed before the same court in four weeks' time.

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