DEFENCE Counsel for Night Stalker accused Delroy Grant allege a torch found on the defendant was planted by the police.

Delroy Grant, of Brockley Mews, Brockley, is accused of carrying out a string of burglaries and sex attacks on elderly men and women across south east London over 17 years.

His 29 alleged offences relate to 18 incidents in Beckenham, Bromley, Orpington, Shirley, Croydon and Forest Hill between 1992 and 2009.

Grant, who the court heard was a carer for his disabled wife and a father-of-seven, denies 16 counts of burglary, two attempted burglaries, three rapes, one attempted rape, six indecent assaults and one sexual assault.

Jurors at Woolwich Crown Court were told today that days after his arrest, Grant was found by Detective Constable Joanne Crockford to be “agitated” and “pacing his police cell”.

It is claimed Grant, 53, said: “I don’t want to fit anyone up…have you thought about my son?

“He lives in the right area and he’s the same height as me.”

DC Crockford told the court she replied saying she would have to pass this information on.

Grant is then alleged to have replied: “No, don’t pass it on, I don’t want to fit anyone up.”

Courtenay Griffiths QC, defending, said Grant denies having any such conversation and that he and DC Crockford had spoken about his family before.

Mr Griffiths said: “What he in fact said was ‘were you thinking about Delroy junior?’ and that you had mentioned Delroy junior before.

“He said he didn’t want to put Delroy junior or any of his sons in the frame.”

Mr Griffiths also asked DC Crockford why she hadn’t informed the custody sergeant about the conversation, as required by police protocol, and queried why it had taken two weeks for her to make a half-page statement.

DC Crockford said she believed that given the significance of the statement, the officers on the investigative team should be told first.

The court also heard that when Grant’s fingerprints were being taken, he said to Detective Constable Steven Purvis: “I don’t know why you’re bothering, I always wear gloves.”

Mr Griffiths said: “[Grant] says what he in fact said in a rather light hearted way was ‘I don’t know why you’re bothering. If I was going to commit a burglary I would put gloves on.'”

The defence also claims that when Grant was arrested shortly after midnight on November 15 in 2009, the torch alleged to have been found in Grant’s pocket was never there in the first place.

When cross examining Detective Constable Dave Matthews, who stopped Grant’s Vauxhall Zafira in Witham Road, Beckenham, that same night, Mr Griffiths said: “I am going to suggest that that torch was not found in Grant’s pocket.

“What I am going to put to you is that torch was planted by police officers, which is why there’s confusion about colour and confusion about who found it.”

DC Matthews denied the allegation.

Jurors were also told that when Grant was arrested, he was wearing two pairs of jeans and three t-shirts and that a sock was tied around his waist in lieu of a belt.

They also heard that in his car’s glove compartment was a bolt cutter, pliers and a black woolly hat, and that a crowbar, hammer, pincers, a towel and a blue jumper were found in the boot.

When asked by police where he had been that evening, Grant is alleged to have said he had been waiting outside the Co-op to buy some “puff”, meaning cannabis.

The court also heard that police found three torches, a home-made mask, three screwdrivers, a chisel and dark clothing at his family home, where he lived with his wheelchair-bound wife, who suffers from multiple sclerosis.

The trial continues.