A REPEAT burglar who appeared before a judge on his 35th birthday received a two-year, seven-month jail term as a present.

Daniel Melhado, who has 103 previous convictions, will spend his next one behind bars after he admitted another house raid during his latest spate of offending.

And when he was being sent back to prison for his latest burglary he shouted from the dock ‘I am not harming anyone’, only for the judge to reply ‘You are’.

Rob Welling, prosecuting, told Swindon Crown Court how the victim was working on a house in Graham Street in August last year.

Around lunchtime he had put down his phone, which was in case with ID and bank cards, and when he went to fetch it he found it was not there.

At around the same time the plastic was being used for a string of contactless purchases across town to the tune of £75.08.

He said Melhado was caught on CCTV using the cards on four occasions between 12.51pm and 2pm that day.

Two days later he was out with another man stealing bicycles, using bolt cutters to get them.

Mr Welling said two 14-year-old lads had locked their bikes together and to a railing at the Oasis and returned to find them gone.

Another man had left his cycle secured at Tesco on Ocotal Way but it was also removed and both incidents were caught on CCTV.

Melhado, of no fixed abode, admitted burglary, three thefts and four frauds. He initially denied the house raid but changed his plea to guilty.

The court heard 68 of his 103 previous convictions were for theft and similar matters and was already a three-strike burglar.

Tony Bignall, defending, said that he was currently serving jail time for another break in and was not due for release until November.

He said he had a number of addiction problems but long term he would like to be drug and offending free and start a family.

Passing sentence Judge Robert Pawson said “Mr Melhado you have got an appalling record.

“It is sad that today is your 35th birthday, you should not be celebrating it in the dock being sentenced to imprisonment.

“The fact is the public are entitled to be protected from people like you,” to which the defendant shouted that he was not harming anyone.

But the judge replied “You are. If you go in to other people’s property and take the bank cards and mobile phone you cause them not only gross inconvenience you are stealing money: it is not free money.

“When you steal a bike from a 14-year-old boy. A bicycle worth £300 or £400 to an adult would be a minor inconvenience or irritation.

“To a boy of 14 it is probably their most significant possession. It causes real inconvenience.

“You say why do you keep going in to prison, what good does it do, talk about a revolving door.

“You have 44 convictions for 103 offences, now about 110. Since 1998: robbery, offences on bail. You have received drug treatment, probation orders, you have been to custody. Having been to custody you have reoffended.

“You ask what is the point n sending me to prison: the point is A, people have to be punished for breaking the law. Whether you agree, that is what society says. And B, the public needs protecting from you.”