Jail for man who burgled Middleton house

Stephen Cleary

Stephen Cleary

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A dangerous villain who burgled a house in Middleton on the Wolds has been jailed for 15 months and recalled to prison until 2018.

Stephen Cleary, 39, dubbed Goole’s “Mr Big” for masterminding a heroin and cocaine supply network was released early from an 11-year prison sentence - only to go back to crime.

He burgled a house and then fought with the police sparking a nationwide police hunt to find him. The public were warned not to approach Cleary as he was “deemed dangerous.” He was thought to be hiding with criminal associates in Doncaster.

Cleary formerly of Hazel Grove, Goole, was on parole when he ransacked a house belonging to Rita Godfrey at Station Road, Middleton-on-the Wolds. He had been drinking in the village with a friend who told him the occupier was on holiday for a month in America. He stole her wedding and eternity ring, cash and jewellery worth £620 on December 10 last year. He left a blood stain on the kitchen wall after breaking a window.

Humberside police ran the blood through the police national computer instantly realising it was Cleary who had been released from an 11-year sentence in March 2012 and still had half to serve. Cleary was jailed in 2006 for supplying Class A drugs, money-laundering and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice in Goole.

Investigations revealed Cleary had assets of £58,730 from running heroin and cocaine. At the same time his girlfriend Lisa Oldrige, now 40, was jailed for money laundering for 18-months and had assets of £56,537. The pair led luxury lifestyles with assets of £115,000. Their ill-gotten gains included expensive cars, foreign holidays, houses and jewellery. Ms Oldrige had a £3,000 breast enhancement operation paid for out of the illegal funds. All their assets were seized in a Proceeds of Crime hearing – except Olrige’s breasts.

Cleary appeared for sentence at Hull Crown Court on Friday (July 11) after pleading guilty to one charge of burglary and a second charge of escaping from lawful arrest at Northway, Goole.

Crown advocate Phillip Evans said Mrs Godfrey had left her home for an extended holiday in the hands of two friends who discovered the window open and curtain blowing on December 11 2013. He said every draw in the house had been pulled open apart from the living room and items of great sentimental value stolen.

Clearly was spotted in the early afternoon on January 8 in a car on Northway by two female officers. When it was made clear they knew who he was and were going to arrest him he replied: “I don’t think so!” “I am not going anywhere! I will f***ing fight you!” PC Joanne Price-Green racked her baton after Cleary stretched his arms wide and clenches his fists. A scuffle followed and he escaped.

Police issued a public appeal saying Cleary was wanted on prison recall and was possibly hiding in Doncaster or other areas of South Yorkshire.

Defence barrister Anil Murray said Cleary had been recalled to prison following his re-capture and his greatest punishment was serving the rest of his eleven-year sentence.

He said he had stayed out of trouble initially, but had been drinking in Foston-on-the-Wolds when a friend suggested breaking into an un-occupied house.

Sentencing, Judge Simon Jack told Cleary that he realised he had not been in trouble for burglary for a long time, but that was partly because he had been serving an eleven-year sentence.

He said whatever sentence he passed could not be made to run consecutively with his prison recall. He said the burglary was not of a high value, but was aggravated because of the sentimental value of the jewellery taken. He jailed Cleary for 15months. He is not due to be released until August 2018.

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