Loughborough Echo

£300k haul of burglary gang who targeted owners of luxury cars


- By SUZY GIBSON Court Reporter

THREE burglars have been jailed for their roles in a conspiracy to steal high-value cars from under their owners’ noses.

Five out of the six planned breakins took place while unsuspecti­ng occupants were asleep.

Ignition keys were stolen and used to take prestige vehicles from homes in Loughborou­gh and Coalville, as well as Thrapston, Northampto­nshire – with their haul totalling more than £300,000.

Hayden Mills, 26, with accomplice­s Keaton Riddell, 25, and Jordan Hanlon, 27, all pleaded guilty to conspiring to burgle houses and conspiracy to steal cars, in July 2019.

Andrew Peet, prosecutin­g, told Leicester Crown Court: “This was properly planned, targeted criminalit­y.

“Fortunatel­y, the victims weren’t disturbed, but that’s more by luck than judgement.”

The cars taken were four BMWs, an Audi and a Nissan, worth between £18,500 and £80,000.

As well as losing a £67,000 vehicle, one home owner in Coalville also had a Rolex watch and £28,000 in cash stolen.

The Birmingham-based criminals were said to have carried out reconnaiss­ance trips, identifyin­g highvalue vehicles prior to the thefts.

Mr Peet said: “CCTV footage shows they were masked in order to protect their identities, but also with the added threat of masked intruders should they be disturbed by any householde­r during the burglary – although no residents were involved in a confrontat­ion.

“Mills also had a lock-up facility where the group were able to take the cars and then further conceal them by changing their identity.”

The prosecutor said three Loughborou­gh break-ins were carried out by Mills and Riddell on the night of July 26 and 27, 2019.

The first burglary, in Nicholson Road, proved largely unsuccessf­ul, because although the owner was out he had taken his car keys with him.

The home was “ransacked” by the intruders, who took a Dyson appliance and “expensive stereo equipment,” but the car could not be driven away.

Another vehicle, worth £51,000, was stolen during a break-in in Patterdale Drive and another, worth £18,500, was taken from Park Road.

Mills and Hanlon then both targeted two homes in Thrapston on July 28, 2019, first taking a £50,000 car from Wainwright Way and two others, together worth £115,000, from an address in Tyler Way, although one was found abandoned a short distance away, due to transmissi­on failure.

Mills alone was involved in a break-in near Belvoir Road, Coalville, on July 28, as a family slept throughout.

Their £67,000 Nissan GTR, £28,000 in cash and a Rolex watch were taken.

Kitchen knives were later found in the living room and in the garden, although their purpose was unclear, said the prosecutor.

The Rolex was later recovered from Mills’s bedroom.

He lied, telling officers a friend gave it to him and it was a fake when it was “provably genuine”.

Mr Peet said all three defendants had previous conviction­s for house burglary.

Christophe­r Whitehead, mitigating for Mills, said his client was already serving a five-year, sevenmonth sentence for a robbery committed after the burglaries.

He said: “He accepts responsibi­lity for being part of a group in the conspiracy.

“He has health problems, having had his spleen removed, and is the father of a young daughter, born while he’s been in custody.”

Cathlyn Orchard, for Hanlon, said: “He was just involved in the two Thrapston offences.

“He’s been employed most of his adult life but went into a downward spiral after the death of a friend in a car crash and became involved in class A drugs.”

Hanlon’s partner is pregnant with their child, the court was told. “

He’s very remorseful for the impact of his offending and bitterly regrets his involvemen­t on this one night in July two years ago.”

Ekwall Tiwana, mitigating for Riddell, said: “He played a part in the three Loughborou­gh burglaries, not the others.

“He says he’s really sorry for his actions at a time when he was addicted to cocaine and desperate for money.

“There’s been a sea-change in his attitude since then, with references describing him as mature and reliable.

“He’s a full-time parent to his daughter and no longer spends thousands of pounds on drug addiction.”

Mills, of Dixon Close, Birmingham, was jailed for five years, to run concurrent­ly with the robbery sentence he is already serving.

Riddell, of Davenport Drive, Birmingham, and Hanlon, of Lydgate Grove, Birmingham, were each jailed for four years and two months.

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