Victims get stolen goods back following family's £86,000 burglary spree in Northamptonshire

Police return tools taken after investigating 160 thefts covering 16 months

Wednesday, 29th January 2020, 2:02 pm
Updated Wednesday, 29th January 2020, 2:04 pm

Ten victims of a family of thieves were reunited with their stolen belongings after detectives wrapped up investigations into a spate of burglaries in South Northamptonshire.

Four family members and a 16-year-old boy were sentenced for conspiracy to steal offences at Northampton Crown Court last year following a campaign that netted £86,000 worth of tradesmans' tools during a 16-month period.

Police used an event at Brackley Town Hall for grateful owners to reclaim their stolen Items.

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Police highlighted thieves targeting tradespeople at the even in Brackley

Officers looked at more than 160 offences targeting vehicles, shops and petrol stations focusing on high-value tools.

Detective Sergeant Gordon McWilliams said: “The recovery of the stolen items followed a large-scale operation to tackle a spate of tool theft offences in 2018, which resulted in several tradespeople being prevented from working due to the heartless behaviour of the people who stole from them.

“The police operation led to the arrest and conviction of four men who were all from the same family, and a 16-year-old boy, with sentences including prison terms, community orders, unpaid work requirements and rehabilitation orders.

“At the event, we were able to happily reunite ten people with items stolen by these offenders, items they did not believe they would ever see again. A great many more people attended and received free tool marking kits and advice about a new app which can aid with the recovery of any stolen tools.

Crime victims were able to reclaim their stolen goods in Brackley

“We really appreciated the public’s interest and were delighted to see tools returned as well being able to offer practical advice to prevent future crimes.”

James Devlin, 49, along with brothers Noel, 27, and 18-year-old Jimmy Devlin were all jailed for between 12 and 18 months. Hughie Devlin, 25, was given a suspended sentence and the 16-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was given a youth rehabilitation order with two years supervision.

James Devlin was jailed at Northampton Crown Court.