A TERRIFIED householder was confronted by masked burglars brandishing a knife and a shovel in a “sinister” night-time raid targeting his brand-new car, Bradford Crown Court heard.

CCTV footage showed three intruders, one in a skeleton mask, “casing the joint” before two of them broke into the property to demand the keys to an expensive and high-powered VW Golf.

In the dock was Rehan Malik, 21, of Wensleydale Road, Bradford Moor, Bradford, and a youth aged 17, who cannot be identified because of his age.

Both pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to burgling the house in Springwood Drive, Copley, Halifax, on September 17 last year.

Malik, with eight previous convictions for 23 offences, also admitted dangerous driving on prison licence in Bradford city centre on May 4 last year.

The youth further pleaded guilty to two house burglaries and a theft.

Malik was jailed for a total of 32 months and the teenager was sentenced to an 18 month detention and training order.

Prosecutor Jayne Beckett said on Friday that the burglary took place after the masked raiders were seen prowling round outside the house at 4am.

A couple who were asleep at the address were disturbed by the intruders. The male occupant went downstairs to be confronted by two of the burglars brandishing a knife and a shovel while the third kept watch outside.

The man handed over his car keys after he was threatened with violence.

His Golf was driven off and pursued by the police. Malik and the youth were traced and apprehended but the third burglar made good his escape.

Malik was on bail at the time for the offence of dangerous driving.

The court heard he was spotted on Manningham Lane at the wheel of a blue VW Golf with no licence plate. Malik, who was uninsured and unlicensed, sped off at 10am and led police on a “horrific” seven-minute pursuit.

Mrs Beckett said the high-speed chase across the city centre on to the Shipley/Airedale Road only ended when Malik’s car broke down. He fled on foot and scaled a wall before struggling with arresting officers.

Mrs Beckett said: “The police were horrified, it’s fair to say.”

Shufqat Khan, Malik’s barrister, said he was in debt at the time and under pressure to pay up. He was invited to take part in the burglary by a much older and more criminally sophisticated man. Mr Khan said Malik had grown up while spending five months in prison on remand. He was taking a series of educational and training courses to enable him to lead a law-abiding life on his release.

Ayesha Smart, representing the youth, said he was very remorseful and disappointed in himself for becoming involved in the burglaries.

“He did not have a weapon and he did not arm himself,” Miss Smart said.

The Recorder of Bradford, Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC, said it was a “sinister and serious” burglary that had left the householder traumatised.

“It was a targeted, planned and equipped Hanoi burglary while the couple were asleep in their beds,” he said.

Malik was jailed for eight months for the dangerous driving offence with two years to run consecutively for the burglary. He was banned from driving for three years and four months.