A PROLIFIC burglar has been told he could avoid a jail term after a defence barrister said the latest spree of crimes were a 'cry for help.'

Biko Woods has 70 previous burglaries to his name and has spent numerous spells in prison for his offending.

The 40-year-old of Pinnocks Way, Botley, appeared at Oxford Crown Court on Friday after admitting two burglaries, three attempted burglaries and two thefts.

Instead of proceeding directly to sentencing Woods, his defence barrister urged the court for a different approach to try and tackle his offending for good.

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Gavin Holme, defending, said: "I am going to apply for a course of action that maybe in the circumstances deemed exceptional.

"He is 40 and he has spent probably the last 20 or so years of his life in and out of prison."

Mr Holme said his client had an addiction to class A drugs and, speaking of his latest burglaries, he called them 'a cry for help.'

He said: "He left his DNA at the scene of two domestic burglaries.

"It's a cry for help because it is 70 burglaries in his past, he knows better than to leave DNA."

He added that his client had now become 'institutionalised'.

He asked presiding Judge Nigel Daly to adjourn the case to explore the possibility of a residential rehabilitation scheme for Woods to tackle his offending.

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Judge Daly agreed to adjourn the case and said: "The best way to protect the public from him and the best way to stop him from committing burglaries is to take away that which is making him commit the burglaries.

"That is his Class A drug addiction."

The case was adjourned for a further meeting with the National Probation Service to consider his eligibility for the scheme and he was remanded in custody.