A SUPPORT worker who provided youths with a false alibi when they turned up at their Bradford residential home with wheelbarrows full of stolen goods has been spared an immediate prison sentence.

Abdur-Rahim Killeen turned a blind eye because he was torn between his duty to inform the police and his loyalty to the boys, Bradford Crown Court heard on Monday.

Killeen, 30, of Primary Way, Undercliffe, Bradford, was seen on CCTV putting an item from one of the barrows into his car, prosecutor Naakesha Michl said.

He then falsified the staff log book to provide an alibi for the boys.

He wrote in the book that they were at the home watching a football match on the television at the time.

Killen, who admitted perverting the course of justice and handling stolen goods, was sentenced to eight months imprisonment, suspended for two years, and must also complete 250 hours of unpaid work.

Miss Michl said that Killeen had been working at the supported accommodation for vulnerable youths for two years when he committed the offences on July 22 last year.

He was caught on CCTV talking to the boys, who had returned to their home pushing wheelbarrows that were full of used electrical goods stolen in a commercial burglary.

Killeen was seen to touch items and put something of low value into his car.

He then wrote in the log book that the youngsters were in the living room at that time, watching Liverpool FC playing against German side Borussia Dortmund in the International Champions Cup.

Killeen told the police he had not kept an accurate log and that although he had suspected the items were stolen, he had not alerted the police.

The court heard that he was of previous good character and that his behaviour had cost him his job.

Two boys from the accommodation had been sentenced in the Youth Court to referral orders for handling stolen goods.

Killeen’s barrister, John Batchelor, said his role as a support worker meant he could not stop the youths going out at night.

There was no real gain to him from his actions except for helping him to keep the peace at the home.

Killeen had found it difficult to reconcile his role with maintaining a bond with the boys, the court was told.

He had been flustered and led down the path of colluding with them.

Killeen provided support for his poorly mother and he was engaged to be married.

He now worked as a driver and had two jobs to support his children.

Mr Batchelor said he was genuinely remorseful.

“He was complicit; turning a blind eye is probably the height of it,” he said.

Judge Colin Burn said that Killeen’s family was supporting him.

There was a very high prospect of rehabilitation and he did not expect him to trouble the courts again.