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THATCHER VANDAL IS GEM THIEF.

THE man jailed for beheading a statue of Margaret Thatcher once confessed to stealing pounds 27,000 of jewellery, it emerged yesterday.

Paul Kelleher, 37, was a security guard at the Excelsior Hotel, near Heathrow, in 1995 when he stole it from a safety deposit box.

He was given two years' probation and 100 hours community service after confessing to police three years later.

Kelleher told Isleworth crown court he had confessed because of his religious beliefs.

A single stolen ring worth pounds 480 was traced, sold through Christie's.

Judge John Crocker told him: "You have escaped prison by the skin of your teeth."

Kelleher was jailed for three months this week for the later Thatcher statue offence.

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BELIEFS: Kelleher
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Feb 21, 2003
Words:122
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