Shop workers in Ipswich have hit out at the sentence handed down to a burglar who raided their stores.

They were speaking as 38-year-old David Dixon begins a two year prison term after being sentenced at Ipswich Crown Court on Thursday.

Dixon, of Fonnereau Road, Ipswich, has a long criminal history stretching back to when he was a teenager.

Ipswich Star: Matthew Thomas, owner of St John's Kerala store in IpswichMatthew Thomas, owner of St John's Kerala store in Ipswich (Image: Jude Holden)

He was sentenced in relation to two incidents in August this year.

The first took place on Tuesday, August 1 at Kerala Store in St John’s Road. The back door was forced open and cigarettes, alcohol and cash were taken.

In the second, on Wednesday August 9, a metal bar was used to force open the shutters of Andrews Jewellers in the Buttermarket. A window was smashed and jewellery was taken from inside.

Ipswich Star: St John's Kerala Store in IpswichSt John's Kerala Store in Ipswich (Image: Jude Holden)

Matthew Thomas, 61, owner of the Kerala Store, said: “The morning after so much was gone. I couldn’t sleep after it happened. The shop is not very busy, so losing money is very bad.

“These anti-social people, they come out after two years and do the same. They should be kept away from people. They are a nuisance to the public. I think he should always be kept away from the public, not just for two years."

Mr Thomas said: “It is good to be free after months from this. It was very quick action from the police. It was very good."

Ipswich Star: Police outside Andrews jewellers after the raidPolice outside Andrews jewellers after the raid (Image: Charlotte Bond)

But he added: “I am afraid it will happen again. I have installed a rolling shutter and chained the steel door, but thieves can still come.

“One of the main problems here is that the lights in the street and everywhere all go off at 11pm. This is a big problem.

“But this is a victory not only for me but for the police and the court. We are lucky because the camera spotted him, and he had no mask.”

Ipswich Star: Ipswich man David DixonIpswich man David Dixon (Image: Suffolk police)

Staff at Andrews Jewellers also felt the sentence was too lenient.

A worker, who did not want to be named, said: “We felt the sentence was too lenient, but it is good he’s behind bars. It’s 24 months but it will only be nine months with good behaviour.”