Two men have been jailed today (March 21) after admitting conspiring to commit burglaries at more than 30 homes across the South East including Andover.
20 year-old Karolis Gribauskas and 22 year-old Ernestaus Vitkus, both of Listowel Road, Dagenham, London, were each jailed for a total of six years and eight months after appearing at Winchester Crown Court.
The men had each admitted a charge of conspiring to commit burglary at a previous hearing.
Gribauskas and Vitkus were part of a conspiracy that saw 32 burglaries committed across the South East between May 1 2015 and November 27, 2015, the court was told.
The burglaries took place at homes in Alresford, Andover, Basingstoke, Farnborough and Winchester in Hampshire, as well as at properties in Surrey, Sussex and the Thames Valley area.
The court heard that both men were part of a gang that snapped locks on doors, of homes that were vulnerable or where the occupants were away on holiday.
It is thought the total value of property stolen by the gang totalled to thousands of pounds.
The men were brought to justice after an investigation by the Northern Operation Hawk team, which was set up to identify, arrest and charge burglary suspects, gather intelligence and recover stolen property.
After the hearing, Detective Sergeant James Massey said: “The offenders, who were living in east London, were identified as a result of a joint investigation between Hampshire Constabulary, Surrey Police and Sussex Police.
“Hampshire Constabulary led this complex and worthwhile investigation that led to the recovery of thousands of pounds worth of property. There are still a number of seized items that have not been identified but are believed to be stolen.
“The guilty pleas and subsequent sentences should provide reassurance and peace of mind to the victims who suffered a very traumatic experience, and in some cases, lost sentimental valuables that have been irreplaceable.
“We will continue to strive to make our communities safe places to live and provide a dedicated response to these complex investigations.”
Pictures of some of the seized items that have not been identified are due to be uploaded to Hampshire Constabulary’s Flickr account.
To view the items, visit http://www.hampshire.police.uk/internet/news-and-appeals/is-this-yours/.