OVER the last two weeks, an array of characters have appeared in front of Lancashire's Crown Court Judges. 

From convicted killers to burglars, drug dealers to thugs, all were handed hefty sentences for their crimes. 

Here are just some of those who have been to court in recent days. 

Martin Riley – the heroin addict and burglar who claimed coronavirus ‘could kill him’ in jail

Chorley Citizen:

THIS week, a heroin addict facing a minimum three-year jail term claimed a chronic lung condition meant prison was an unsafe place for him in the current coronavirus climate.

Martin Riley, 44, once described as a ‘menace to everybody with a house’ after carrying out a string of burglaries while volunteering at a church cafe, found himself back before the courts after his latest crime spree.

Defence barrister Andrew Evans said his client was concerned his chronic pulmonary obstructive disorder (COPD) – a group of lung conditions that cause breathing difficulties – would make him particularly vulnerable to Covid-19 and that Riley had raised concerns about a lack of personal protective equipment and social distancing in Preston Prison.

Rejecting Riley’s plea for him to go against sentencing guidelines, Judge Simon Medland QC said his lengthy list of previous convictions and the fact he committed his latest burglaries while out on prison licence went against him, as well as concerns the author of a pre-sentence report had cited about the defendant ‘just telling her what he thought she wanted to hear’.

Prosecutor Karen Brooks said the first of Riley’s latest two burglaries took place at a house in Rawsthorne Avenue, Haslingden, on January 15.

He was jailed for 44 months. Read the full story here.

George Landon, who beat his ex-partner with a chair after a visit to Manchester’s Christmas markets

Chorley Citizen:

A THUG who subjected his estranged partner to a hotel room beating with chairs and a telephone after a drunken visit to Manchester’s Christmas markets has been jailed.

Preston Crown Court heard that months earlier father-of-one George Landon had dragged his victim by her hair through broken glass during an attack in her own home.

Prosecuting, Paul Cummings said Landon had been in a relationship with his victim for around six years but they separated last October.

And despite a bail condition for Landon not to contact his victim, Mr Cummings said that they had made an arrangement to stay over together in the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Manchester, on December 14 and visit the Christmas markets.

After checking into the hotel the pair had drinks in the city centre but later in the evening Landon got into an argument with a group of men.

At first the victim tried to intervene but a drunken Landon then hit her on the back of the head.

She then went back to the hotel alone and fell asleep.

Mr Cummings said: “She was awoken by the defendant who returned to the room some time later.

“He took her mobile phone off her and struck her on the head with it, he threw some takeaway food at her and he hit her twice with a chair. During the course of this assault he told her to stop crying. He said ‘I’ll hurt you more if you don’t stop’. He also punched her to the face and to the leg.

He was jailed for 16 months. Read the full story here.

The convicted killer and heroin addict who mugged a deaf woman

Chorley Citizen:

LAST week, a convicted killer and a heroin addict who teamed up to mug a deaf woman as she walked home with her shopping were jailed.

Preston Crown Court heard how killer John Greenwood and Danielle Yamana Apostoloff Boyarin pulled 65-year-old victim Pamela Evans’ hood over her eyes before snatching her handbag in the “terrifying” daylight robbery.

Judge Mark Brown praised builders Paul Walsh and Daryl Cunliffe who saw Greenwood and Boyarin and leapt into action after hearing Ms Evans screaming for help and detained the defendants until police arrived.

Prosecuting, Stephen Parker said that Ms Evans was walking home from Tesco in Accrington at 8.15am on February 19 when she was approached by Greenwood and Boyarin in Willow Street.

Greenwood tried to engage her in conversation but she couldn’t understand what he was saying and waved him away.

Mr Parker said as she turned the corner Boyarin, 24, and Greenwood, 46, continued to follow Ms Evans.

Mr Parker said: “The next thing the female defendant grabbed hold of Ms Evans’ coat hood, pulling it over her eyes so that she was both blind and deaf at that point.

“Greenwood took hold of Ms Evans' handbag, which was across her shoulder. She tried to keep hold of it but he pulled it with some degree of force, causing the bag to snap, and the two of them ran off.

Boyarin and Greenwood were each jailed for three years and two months. Read the full story here.

Matthew Hefford, the father who hid his drugs in cereal boxes and a Pringle can

Chorley Citizen:

A FATHER-OF-THREE caught selling class A drugs from a Pringles tub was sent back to jail this week.

Preston Crown Court heard how 33-year-old Matthew Hefford, who has previous convictions for robbery and burglary, was caught red-handed by police selling heroin and crack cocaine.

Prosecuting Karen Brooks said police were on duty in Burnley around lunchtime on March 5 and saw a number of known drug users congregating around an alleyway on Angle Street.

She said: "They suspected the presence of the defendant, who approached the group, had led to a drug transaction taking place.

"As a result of that the defendant was stopped nearby and a search took place. The defendant informed the officer he had something in his pocket which contained Class A drugs and the officer recovered a small Pringles tub. Inside he could see multiple amounts of substance in some plastic.

"He was then searched and found to be in possession of two mobile phones and £228 in cash. He also had a tick list."

Officers found one wrap of cocaine on Hefford when he was further searched at the police station.

Following Hefford's arrest police searched his home in Thorn Street, Burnley, and found rolls of plastic bags, digital scales and two balloons containing wraps of drugs inside a box of porridge. There was also another tick list and mobile phone.

He was jailed for 32 months. Read the full story here.

Owen Mauguan, the thug who beat his partner with a metal pole

Chorley Citizen:

THIS week, court hear how a terrified woman had to flee barefoot from her home after her partner launched a terrifying attack on her with a metal pole.

Unprovoked Owen Francis Maughan rained blows down upon the body, face and head of his girlfriend on June 23 last year after the pair had been drinking at home and watching a film.

Judge David Potter told Preston Crown Court that there was ‘little or no prospect’ of rehabilitation for the 34-year-old, who had previously served time in jail for attacking the same woman with an umbrella.

Sentencing Maughan to two years in jail, Judge Potter said: “I note from the pre-sentence report that you are at significant risk of reoffending and pose a risk to causing significant harm to members of the public.

“That is due to your record and the fact you have a long-standing misuse of alcohol – that being at the core of our offending.

“Your counsel has stated that you have shown remorse towards the injuries you caused but I find that difficult to reconcile due to the fact you contested this matter at trial.

“This offence is so serious that only an immediate custodial sentence is justified."

Read the full story here.