A 'professional burglar' from Ellesmere Port with 200 previous criminal offences on his record went burgling in a Chester estate on a snowy night.

Chester Crown Court heard on Monday, October 8 that police officers had little trouble tracking where David Lightfoot, 43, of Caxton Close, had committed crimes during the night of February 27 as his footprints were clearly visible in the snow.

Lightfoot managed to avoid arrest that night as he dumped all his ill-gotten gains at a property in Sycamore Drive, Lache, but he was found and arrested on September 7.

Judge Simon Berkson sentenced Lightfoot, who had 46 previous offences for burglary, to eight months in prison.

Prosecuting, Ian Criddle said police tracked footprints on Toft Close to a shed, where a motorcycle worth £2,000 had been taken along with a video game.

The footprints then led to an unsecured vehicle parked on Courtney Road Lightfoot had looked around and discarded items, before taking a hat and scarf.

The footprints were then tracked to Sycamore Drive, where police attended and discovered a tyre mark which belonged to the motorcycle.

They looked through a window of a property and found all the stolen items but not the defendant, who had run off.

There was also a stolen item which Lightfoot denied having obtained through burglary, but when interviewed by police in September he admitted handling stolen goods.

Lightfoot had 36 previous convictions with a criminal record "littered with offences of dishonesty", Mr Criddle added.

Defending, Mark Connor said Lightfoot had entered a guilty plea at the earliest opportunity and all items were recovered.

He added: "What else can I say for a man of such a record?"

Lightfoot had been sentenced to 283 and a half months in prison in the past 28 years – a total of nearly 24 years sentenced.

He had gone into care at the age of five, suffered with OCD, ADHD and had PTSD after witnessing a murder in 2000.

Mr Connor added: "His offending record has slowed down in recent years.

"When he committed these offences he was temporarily homeless, so committed these offences in order to get money.

"When he received his last sentence – for eight months – he became drug free, having been taking class A drugs."

He had a job working at Nathaniel's Wine Bar in Bromborough until he was arrested.

Mr Connor suggested to Judge Berkson to "take a chance" and hand Lightfoot a community order so he could work with probation.

But Judge Berkson imposed an eight-month prison term for Lightfoot, adding: "Once again you find yourself before the courts. You are a professional burglar."