Sex offender John Cronin jailed for theft from nuns

Serial sex offender and conman John Cronin has been jailed for a year after he admitted stealing £50 from nuns at a convent in Northern Ireland.

Cronin, from Tranent in East Lothian, was branded “beneath contempt” after he admitted stealing the cash from Drumalis House in Larne, County Antrim.

The 41-year-old, who once posed as a priest to attack a victim, tricked nuns at the retreat into thinking he was an insurance company boss.

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Cronin, who was sentenced to life for attacking Tory party worker Judy X in 1992 after pretending to be a priest, stole £50 from the home, run by the ­Sisters of the Cross and Passion.

The convicted sex offender extended his stay at the retreat by three days and promised to pay £150 for accomodation but left without paying.

He was spotted on CCTV returning to the retreat house where he broke in and stole the money.

A nun who spotted him raised the alarm and he was arrested by police in England in June last year.

Cronin pled guilty to burglary and theft charges with his defence lawyer telling the court that he wished to apologise for his actions.

Judge Devlin said Cronin had led a life of “confidence trickery and deception” with 50 offences committed over the last 25 years for dishonesty, theft, fraud and perjury.