Men tried to break into Ipswich pub with crow bar and hatchet axe

The crash happened outside the Mermaid Pub, Ipswich. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Two men have been sentenced for trying to break into the Mermaid pub in Ipswich - Credit: Gregg Brown

Two men who tried to break into a popular Ipswich pub armed with an array of tools including a crow bar and a hatchet axe have been sentenced. 

Police were called around 4.40am on Sunday after Ayoub El Abib Amrani, 25, and Mohamed Hafidi, 23, were seen by a witness looking into windows at the Mermaid pub on Yarmouth Road, Suffolk Magistrates' Court heard. 

The pair, who both reside at the Holiday Inn Express, Birchwood Road, Dedham, were then seen on CCTV as they walked past the Sainsbury's petrol station and turned right into Hadleigh Road, Wayne Ablett, prosecuting, told the court. 

Police officers then saw two men matching the description on London Road near the junction with Hadleigh Road and stopped them, the court heard. 

Both men were searched by officers and El Abib Amrani was found to have a pair of gloves, a black balaclava, a metal chisel and a crow bar was discovered inside his trousers. 

Hafidi was found in possession of a pair of gloves, a balaclava, a hatchet axe, a silver hammer, a small amount of herbal cannabis and a Samsung mobile phone. 

When CCTV was viewed by police, officers saw the two men trying to get into the back of the pub using the implements, Mr Ablett said. 

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One of the men appeared to notice the CCTV camera, and they stopped and left the area, the court heard. 

In a police interview, El Abib Amrani told officers he had been drinking, was on medication and didn't remember anything. 

Hafidi also told police he was on medication and could not remember the incident, the court heard.

Some damage was caused to one of the back doors of the Mermaid pub during the incident. 

El Abib Amrani had a previous burglary conviction after pleading guilty at Chelmsford Magistrates' Court on April 30, the court heard. 

On that occasion, he was handed a community order with requirements. 

El Abib Amrani and Hafidi, who are both currently seeking asylum in the UK, both pleaded guilty to attempted burglary and going equipped for burglary on Monday. 

Hafidi, who had no previous convictions, admitted a further charge of possessing cannabis. 

Magistrates jailed El Abib Amrani for 12 weeks, and revoked his previous community order. 

Hafidi also received a 12-week prison sentence but his term was suspended for 12 months, with 80 hours of unpaid work and 10 rehabilitation activity requirement days.