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Second man charged in connection with string of high value raids across the North East
03 Jul | 12:05

A second suspected burglar has been charged in connection with a string of high-value raids across the North East.

Last month Northumbria Police’s Central Burglary Team charged a 19-year-old with 16 burglaries across the region that took place in July last year.

The specialist team of detectives had launched an investigation after large amounts of jewellery and cash was taken by thieves.

Properties were targeted across Newcastle, Northumberland and Cumbria and detectives believed a travelling gang was responsible.

Enquiries into the raids have been ongoing for nearly a year with hundreds of house-to-house enquiries carried out and significant CCTV trawls.

On June 12 the 19-year-old, who was believed to be staying on land on Regent Farm Road in Gosforth last summer, was arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit burglary.

He appeared before Bedlington Magistrates Court and will next appear before Newcastle Crown Court on July 11.

Now detectives have charged a second individual in connection with the same raids.

The 20-year-old man appeared before magistrates in Bedlington yesterday (Tuesday) and he was remanded in custody to appear before the Crown Court on October 30.

Detective Sergeant Dave Lumsden, of the Central Burglary Team, said enquiries into the offences will continue.

He said: “We have always believed this particular group of burglaries have been linked.

“Large values of jewellery and cash were taken in the raids, as well as a car, and the value of the items stolen is tens of thousands of pounds.

“The fact we have made two arrests nearly a year after the offences took place shows that we will never stop investigating.

“We will chase down every lead and speak to every witness until we have no other investigative leads to follow up on.

“Enquiries into these burglaries will continue and our detectives will work hard to put suspects before the courts.”

Both suspects have been charged with a conspiracy relating to burglaries in Heaton, Gosforth, Wallsend, Dudley, Morpeth and Cumbria.

A man was also charged by the team with a number of high-value Asian Gold burglaries that took place last year but those offences are unrelated to this case.

The Central Burglary Team is led by a Detective Inspector who oversees a team of two Detective Sergeants, 11 Detective Constables, two Visits Officers and two police staff.

Their sole aim is to stop burglaries from happening and arrest those responsible for committing them. Every burglary that happens in Newcastle and Gateshead gets looked at by the team.

Similar teams have also subsequently been set up in other areas of Northumbria Police as a result of the success.

Their work means the risk of household crime in Northumbria is the lowest since records began in 2007 - and the lowest of all forces in England and Wales.

Anyone who has information about burglars operating in the area can contact them by calling 101 or emailing central.intelligence@northumbria.pnn.police.uk.

Note to editors: The first person charged was Thomas Martin Ward, 19, of Colworth Avenue, Bolton. The second man is Douglas Ward, 20, Kendal Road, Worsley, Manchester. These burglaries are not the same burglaries that we issued appeals on earlier this year.

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