A burglar who stole two 12-bore shotguns from a house has been jailed for four years after he provided police with an excellent clue – a photograph of himself holding one of the weapons!

Officers who seized his phone found Jordan Daniel Chandramohan posing for the photograph, holding a shotgun in a wood.

Chandramohan told a jury that he was not the burglar and that while the shotgun in the photo may look real it was, he claimed, a toy plastic one he had come across in the woods behind Tesco in Holywell.

In evidence, he said that if he was the burglar, he would not have been silly enough to be photographed with one of the stolen items.

But jury members at Mold Crown Court decided yesterday that he was – and convicted him of the burglary at Holywell in September of last year.

He admitted two other house burglaries – including one at his own mother’s home where he ransacked her bedroom and stole her sentimental wedding jewellery – and received a four-year prison sentence.

Judge Rowlands said that it was a very serious aggravating feature that two shotguns were stolen and no doubt they had fallen into the hands of the criminal fraternity.

That burglary had been targeted because the defendant knew the guns were there.

Judge Rowlands said the defendant had been responsible for three house burglaries, all in Holywell last summer.

He had a cannabis habit and he was no doubt stealing to feed that.

“Two shotguns were stolen and have now disappeared. That is a very serious matter to be reflected in sentence.

“There is every prospect that they have been sold and found their way into the hands of the criminal fraternity. You have done absolutely nothing to assist with their recovery,” the judge told him.

Prosecuting barrister Karl Scholz said that the burglary had caused the licensed gun holder sleepless nights.

The defendant’s own mother had been “numb” to find out that the person who burgled her home was her own son.

Robin Boag, defending, said that his client had family commitments who deserved credit for admitting two of the three burglaries.

Chandramohan, 24, of Moorfields, Holywell, went to the home of Rory Collier, a keen clay pigeon shooter who held firearms certificates for two 12-bore shotguns, a Webley and Scott and a Lanber, valued at £900, which were stolen along with a money box and an iPad computer tablet.

When police showed him a photograph of the defendant holding a shotgun, he recognised the defendant as a former work colleague and said that the shotgun was identical to his.

He pointed out two distinguishing features – there was a silver piece around the trigger mechanism of the Webley and Scott rifle and there was a “little red plastic thing” on the end of the barrel.

A footwear mark found on the inside of the point of entry was forensically analysed and provided “moderately strong evidence” that it was made by the defendant’s trainers.

In evidence, Chandramohan said that he had posed for the photograph because it was “quite a cool thing, a lot of bravado if you like.”

It was realistic looking and he thought he looked a “bit gangsterish” in the photo, but it was not real.

The photograph had been taken by a friend.

“If I was in possession of a real shotgun then I would not be silly enough to download a photograph of me on the mobile phone,” he said.

He received concurrent two-year sentences for two of the burglaries and a concurrent four-year sentence for the burglary which involved the theft of the shotguns.

Following sentencing, DS Colin Oare said: “I am pleased with this sentence. Chandramohan committed serious offences and is now behind bars for a considerable time.”