A BURGLAR “ransacked” a woman’s home stealing more than £20,000 worth of possessions.

Michael Terence Sadler stole jewellery, a laptop, alcohol and items of “high sentimental value which were absolutely irreplaceable”.

The 27-year-old and others who he refused to name due to “fear of reprisals” forced their way into the property in Lake Grove Road, New Milton.

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They removed a window from its frame and left personal belongings strewn across the floor, a court heard.

The woman who lived there had been to visit her daughter in London on February 15 this year but when she returned the next day “felt something was not right”.

She found doors and windows wide open and that her home was dirty and covered in mud.

New Forest Post: Michael SadlerMichael Sadler

Prosecution barrister, Lucie Taylor, told how the woman’s total loss was estimated to be around £20,150.

Some of this included irreplaceable jewellery passed down to her from her parents.

However, police were able to trace Sadler of Ringwood Road, Walkford using DNA left at the scene.

He gave a no comment interview and was later charged with burglary to which he pleaded guilty.

New Forest Post: Lake Grove Road, New MiltonLake Grove Road, New Milton

A victim impact statement read out in court told how his victim felt terrified, scared and traumatised following the event.

Defending, Keeley Harvey, said that her client wanted to apologise to his victim directly for his actions which he is said to be extremely ashamed of.

Ms Harvey argued that Sadler - a father of two who is expecting another child with his partner - had been dragged along. Furthermore, his amount of the haul amassed to only about £500 in total.

Judge Peter Henry said: “When she returned she found her house had been ransacked”.

He jailed him for 21 months.