Raiders steal £½m of gold and cash from Asian homes in 6mths

Scottish Daily Mail - - Shakespear­e - By An­nie But­ter­worth

CRIM­I­NAL gangs tar­get­ing Asian house­holds have stolen more than £500,000 worth of gold and cash over the past six months, po­lice have re­vealed.

Of­fi­cers have ad­vised com­mu­ni­ties to be vig­i­lant after a num­ber of high value house­break­ings across the coun­try.

Since April, po­lice said there have been 35 re­ports of break-ins to prop­er­ties in

Glas­gow, Pais­ley, Ren­frew, Ayr­shire and Ed­in­burgh, re­sult­ing in more than £500,000 worth of jew­ellery and cash be­ing stolen.

They are urg­ing peo­ple who keep valu­able gold items or cash in their homes to en­sure they are stored safely out of sight, and that their prop­er­ties are ‘ro­bustly se­cured’.

Of­fi­cers are also ask­ing com­mu­ni­ties to look out for any sus­pi­cious ac­tiv­ity in their lo­cal area, with break-ins gen­er­ally hap­pen­ing be­tween 11am and 11pm.

Last month, an 11-year-old girl was threat­ened when armed thieves stole jew­ellery and cash from a prop­erty in Ar­drossan, Ayr­shire. The 46-year-old mother of the girl, who can­not be named to pro­tect the child, said the rob­bers struck while she had gone on an er­rand for less than an hour.

She said: ‘My daugh­ter didn’t want to go out. She’s very ma­ture and I was only go­ing for about an hour.

‘She phoned me right after it hap­pened. She said: “Mummy, phone the po­lice. They took every­thing.” They told her to keep quiet and don’t move while they took every­thing.’

The mother-of-one, whose hus­band was out at the time, came from over­seas to Scotland 14 years ago to seek a bet­ter fu­ture.

She added: ‘I was on my way home when it hap­pened. Th­ese peo­ple are very quick and know how to open doors with a screw­driver or a card.

‘Four or five men with masks came into the house. They took presents, doc­u­ments, pass­ports and cash.’

In March, gold jew­ellery worth more than £27,000 was stolen dur­ing a break-in in Bath­gate, West Loth­ian.

De­tec­tives be­lieve the crime was linked to a rob­bery in nearby Ar­madale on the same night, when Asian gold jew­ellery was also taken. The homes in Brid­gend Park and Mal­lace Av­enue were bro­ken into be­tween 7pm and 9pm.

De­tec­tive In­spec­tor Kevin Gil­mour, said: ‘While the num­bers we’ve seen oc­cur­ring over re­cent times are much lower than two years ago, I want to again re­as­sure the pub­lic we are do­ing every­thing to bring the per­pe­tra­tors to jus­tice.’

High-pro­file gold and jew­ellery thefts led to Po­lice Scotland set­ting up in­ves­ti­ga­tion ‘Op­er­a­tion Suit­case’ seven years ago.

‘Mummy, call the po­lice’

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