A WOMAN who “targeted and preyed” on elderly and vulnerable victims to steal cash and bank cards in three burglaries is starting a long prison sentence.  

Drug addict Dawn Maloney, 39, would "trick" or barge her way into homes in Newport during the hours of darkness, prosecutor Hannah Friedman said.

Two of the people she burgled were in their seventies, Cardiff Crown Court was told.

The three offences took place in the Maindee and Pill areas of Newport between New Year’s Day and February 23.

In the first burglary she took winning scratch cards and cash worth £55,

She stole £72 in the second raid and bank cards in the final offence.

Maloney, of Medway Road, Bettws, Newport pleaded guilty to three counts of burglary and one of attempted burglary.

The defendant asked for a further five similar offences to be taken into consideration.

These offences happened between October 2023 and this February.

The victims in these cases were aged between 66 to 87 and she again stole cash and bank cards.

Maloney is a serial burglar, Miss Friedman said.

In 2020 she was jailed for three years for targeting vulnerable people in their homes during the coronavirus lockdown.

The “callous” Maloney stole or attempted to steal from five victims who were aged 64 and 82 and were all supported by carers due to their age or needs.

She has 30 previous convictions, the court was told.

Her barrister Jac Brown said Maloney was “remorseful” for what she had done and wanted to say sorry to her victims.

He added in mitigation that his client had was long-standing abuser of class A drugs and would commit crime to feed her habit.

Judge Paul Hobson told the defendant: “You decided to fund your drug addiction by preying on vulnerable people and you no doubt viewed them as easy pickings.”

The defendant was jailed for four years and told she would serve half of that term in custody before being released on licence.

The time she has served on remand will count towards that sentence and she will have to pay a victim surcharge.