Car Gang Jailed

A gang of burglars who stole expensive cars from homes across Kent have been sentenced to a total of more than ten years in a young offenders’ institute.

The gang, aged 18 to 25, broke into properties while the owners were asleep, stole their keys and then drove off in their cars.

Between December last year and January they snatched cars totalling more than £350,000, targeting the owners of BMWs, Porches and Mercedes.

Three of the gang, aged 18, 19 and 20, were sentenced to two and a half years behind bars. A fourth member received an 18 months sentence while a fifth was given 15 months.

The remaining members were given suspended sentences.

Detective Constable Barry Goodsell from Kent Police said: "Sitting in court and hearing the victim personal statements being read out really brought home the significance of these crimes, and how they affected innocent people who were targeted merely because they had invested in expensive cars.

"It was a long and complex investigation but thoroughly worth it. The conviction highlights the importance of our automatic number plate recognition infrastructure, which was vital during the course of the investigation.”