THREE “career criminals” with “appalling records” have been jailed for a combined total of eight years and four months after attempting to burgle a motorhome hire unit in Poole.

Simon Paul Sewell, 49, of Turlin Road, Poole, Danny John Kent, 33, of Rockley Road, Hamworthy, and Philip Martin Bright, 45, of Fitzworth Avenue, Poole, all pleaded guilty to committing a non-dwelling burglary.

Bright also pleaded guilty to handling stolen goods in a separate offence, when he was found with a safe containing more than £1,000 stolen from Pizza Hut in Poole.

The trio appeared at Bournemouth Crown Court for sentencing.

Bournemouth Echo: Simon SewellSimon Sewell

Prosecuting, James Wing told the court on August 21, a little after midnight, police had been called by a member of the public who had been sleeping in one of the motorhomes at the Holton Heath Trading Park and heard suspicious rustling coming from the warehouse.

Mr Wing said: “Police turned up and caught them red-handed. The defendants had kicked their way in through a door to gain access.

“A messy search had taken place. The safe had been ripped from the wall. That safe contained a large number of mobile home keys, potentially if they had not been caught in the act they would have got away with substantial financial reward.”

The court heard how Sewell had 72 previous convictions from 185 offences, including multiple burglaries dating back to 1989.

Kent had 18 previous convictions from 56 offences and Bright had 34 convictions from 54 offences.

Bournemouth Echo: Danny KentDanny Kent

Mitigating for Bright, Nick Robinson said the defendant has spent half his life in prison, but he had “a great deal to offer the lives of others”.

He added Bright had an eight-month-old son and a custodial sentence would punish his partner, who was sticking by him.

Representing Kent, Mr Robinson said he had just lost his grandmother and in committing this offence, left his partner and son without him, something he “regrets”.

He added the public may “benefit” from the defendant being supported by the probation service.

Bournemouth Echo: Philip BrightPhilip Bright

Tom Ackworth, representing Sewell said his client had an “appalling record”, committing “burglary after burglary after burglary, year after year after year”.

He said he was making some progress in the community but heroin “became a problem for him” and was spending £40-£60 a day on drugs. Mr Ackworth said the defendant was trying to “make a fresh start”.

However, Judge Robert Pawson sentenced all three defendants to two years and eight months imprisonment. Bright was given an extra four months for handling stolen goods.

Judge Pawson said: “All three of you are career criminals. There was potentially a very high value loss.

“The search was untidy, a safe was ripped away from the wall, there was significant damage.

“[A member of the public] was on the premises. He was asleep in a motor home within the compound when he heard you climbing over the fence.

“You were a group, there was an element of targeting, you knew what you were after, and an element of planning, it was mid-August yet you were wearing snoods and gloves.

“Nothing was taken, that was a matter of luck, not judgement.”