Prolific St Albans thief jailed after rejecting chance to reform

PUBLISHED: 15:04 30 January 2009 | UPDATED: 13:54 06 May 2010

A PROLIFIC thief has been sent to prison after he broke the rules of a programme given to him last summer in order to spare him jail. Murray Bierman, aged 30, admitted committing more than 170 crimes, the majority of which were thefts from vehicles though

A PROLIFIC thief has been sent to prison after he broke the rules of a programme given to him last summer in order to spare him jail.

Murray Bierman, aged 30, admitted committing more than 170 crimes, the majority of which were thefts from vehicles though there were also eight burglaries from homes.

The judge had deferred his sentence under a "C2 Choices and Consequences" programme but Bierman had reoffended and broken the conditions.

The aim of the C2 programme is to help tackle the high level of repeated relapses into crime with prolific offenders. Criminals are bound by court conditions and must take part in a training and rehabilitation programme.

Bierman, of Wells Close, St Albans, was charged with three burglaries which took place last summer in St Albans, as well as theft from a motor vehicle in St Albans, and a racially-aggravated assault when he was in custody in Hatfield in December.

He was sentenced to three years in prison by Judge Baker at St Albans Crown Court on Wednesday.

St Albans Detective Inspector Neil Ballard said: "Murray Bierman has been a prolific offender in St Albans for a number of years causing misery to residents. He was given an opportunity under strict guidance to change his ways, but he chose not to.

"We are very pleased with the sentence that has been given to him which I hope will reassure residents in St Albans and make the city an even safer place to live."

He added: "This was very much a team effort involving many officers and I'd like to thank them for their meticulous work in bringing a weight of evidence against him so that he can be punished for his crimes."

Detective Inspector Stuart Campfield from the C2 project added: "The Choices and Consequences programme is not a soft option. There are strict conditions and committing more crime is taken very seriously. Clearly Bierman was not committed to the programme and failed to demonstrate that he could remain crime free while being rehabilitated in the community.

"However, as a result of C2, he has told us about dozens of additional crimes which might otherwise have remained undetected.

He added: "This I hope offers some reassurance to victims of these burglaries who have been informed of progress in this case and shows that if candidates are not committed, we will not give them the opportunities C2 offers.

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