A GLOUCESTERSHIRE burglar who raided a Wiltshire mansion went on the run before being arrested 120 miles away because he thought he was 'too old' for jail.

Danny O'Loughlin, 44, was convicted in 2008 for his part in a series of burglaries around Britain in which £30 million of high value antiques were stolen.

O'Loughlin was handed an 11-year prison term after taking part in the heists in four counties.

He was released three years ago, but was told last February he was being recalled to prison for breaching the terms of his release over a theft accusation.

O'Loughlin, who has 39 previous convictions, went on the run instead, because he thought it was "unfair" for him to return to complete his sentence.

At the time Gloucestershire Police offered a £1,000 reward for any information which led to his arrest.

But he refused to give himself up, instead working in construction and was travelling to a building job in Maidstone, Kent, when he was finally stopped and arrested during a random police stop at the M25 Clacket Lane Services on June 18 this year.

O'Loughlin was a member of a gang of burglars who netted a £30m haul of antiques and fine art from the Wiltshire home of reclusive property tycoon Harry Hyams: Ramsbury House.

They used stolen 4x4s to batter their way in through a window and making off with over 300 items, including a clock valued at £500,000. 

At the time it was Britain’s biggest ever burglary, with an estimated value of between £30m and £80m. It was knocked off the top spot by the £200m Hatton Gardens raid in 2015.

The gang also raided properties belonging to a Formula 1 businessman Paddy McNally and the Lord Lieutenant of Berkshire.

O'Loughlin, a dad-of-five, also known as Johnson, was one of five men locked up - including an uncle and two cousins - for conspiracy to burgle.

He was eventually released from prison in December 2017 but then notified in February last year that he was to be recalled on licence following an allegation of van theft.

At Maidstone Crown Court last Friday, O'Loughlin told a judge he is now "a changed man" and is "too old" for jail.

His barrister Kerry Waitt told the court: "Early last year he was notified he was to be recalled because it had been reported he was involved in the theft of a van.

"But no proceedings arose from that and he took the view that the recall was unfair and so decided not to surrender.

"But this was not someone escaping or avoiding custody to commit more offences. He supported himself by working.

"Since his arrest, he has found his time in prison very difficult. He feels he is too old and has spent too much of his life there."

O'Loughlin, formerly of Cheltenham, admitted remaining unlawfully at large, as well as an unrelated charge of threatening behaviour committed in July 2018.

He was jailed for a total of four-and-a-half months.

Appearing in court via prison videolink he told the judge, Recorder Nicola Howard QC: "I was 28 when the offences were committed and I'm 44 now. A lot has changed."