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  1. ITV Report

Burglar jailed after smearing ketchup on face to trick his way into elderly couple's home

37-year-old Taj Ramzan of Station Road in Studley, Redditch. Photo: BPM

A bungling burglar has been jailed after he smeared tomato sauce on his face in order to trick an elderly couple into letting him into their home.

Taj Ramzan, who is 37-years-old and of Station Road in Studley near Redditch, claimed he'd been attacked and needed help when he turned up at the couple's home in Leamington Spa.

After the couple let him inside their home, he went upstairs and began rifling through drawers for cash.

Ramzan was rumbled after the brave 86-year-old victim realised what was happening, and calmly ushered him out of the door.

The elderly couple did not report the incident to the police immediately. Instead, they set-up a meeting with Ramzan following a tip-off from one of their granddaughter's who was contacted by someone who said they knew who the offender was.

It was during this meeting with the couple's granddaughter that he is reported to have admitted responsibility.

At Warwickshire Crown Court, Judge Richard Bond told Ramzan:

A lot of planning went into this burglary. Look at the time of day, when people of that age are likely to be up and about, and you chose to deliberately apply ketchup in an attempt to con your victim into showing sympathy for you.

You were able to gain access to the house, and you were intending to steal a considerable amount of cash you were led to believe was in those premises.

Fortunately, despite his age, he realised you were up to no good and took hold of you and walked you out of the property.

– Judge Richard Bond

Nick Devine, defending Ramzan, said that the 37-year-old was pointed in the direction of the couple's home by somebody else, as a means to deal with a drugs debt.

Ramzan admitted carrying out the burglary with intent to steal. He was jailed for 27 months.