A gang has been jailed for a total of nearly 28 years following highly planned burglaries including at the home of former Chelsea captain John Terry.
The group of four men, two from Hounslow, targeted wealthy homes and on some occasions when the owners were still present.
The raids were carried out over a month earlier this year in Surrey and Sussex with around £600,000 worth of luxury items stolen.
“The defendants spent considerable time checking out suitable homes to be targeted,” Judge Susan Tapping said during sentencing at Kingston Crown Court on Friday (July 28).
“It was a very successful campaign - during the course of seven burglaries some £600,000 worth of luxury goods were stolen.”
She told the court a lot of items were of high sentimental value to the homeowners in the “fully planned burglaries".
John Terry’s Oxshott mansion was “deliberately targeted” overnight on February 25-26 while the football legend was away on holiday with his family.
Judge Tapping said that Terry made the mistake of posting a picture of his skiing holiday on social media.
The gang raided the luxury home at night and even returned with a third man and an angle grinder, but the housekeeper was alerted by the alarm.
The court heard £400,000 worth of goods was stolen and damage caused at the luxury property.
No items have been recovered from the burglaries and only one watch was retrieved which had been sold on.
In another burglary, a lady who had been recently widowed was home alone and went downstairs to be confronted by a man in balaclava.
“It has left her feeling nervous and isolated at home,” Judge Tapping said.
“The widowed lady may have suffered the most but she is not the only one.
“Mental trauma is hard to recover fully, she and the other victims have the right to feel safe in their own homes.”
The gang targeted premises, carried out significant planning, brought equipment and tools for the task and carried out some of the burglaries at night, Judge Tapping said.
Some of the men were on licence while they carried out the burglaries and had their sentences extended as a result.
The court heard Roy Head, 28, of Felix Road in Walton, was on police bail but carried out further burglaries just a day after being arrested.
Head was sentenced to seven years and four months in prison.
Darren Eastaugh, 30, of Bedfont Close in Feltham, was jailed for seven years and three months - both men were on licence for a previous burglary they had carried out at the time.
The judge remarked that even though Eastaugh was the driver and planner of the burglaries, he was also “well involved” in the crimes.
Oliver Hart, 25, from Walton but currently with no fixed abode, was jailed for five years and four months. A 12 week suspended sentence from a previous offence will run concurrently.
Joshua Sumer, 27, from Havant in Portsmouth but formerly of Toad Lane in Hounslow, was jailed for eight years for his part in the burglaries.
All four men had pleaded guilty to a conspiracy to burgle involving seven offences with a total loss in the region of £600,000.
Eastaugh and Sumer admitted the Oxshott burglary, while Eastaugh and Hart admitted a burglary in the Staines and Ashford area on February 28 when they broke in but were disturbed.
Hart and Sumer admitted that on March 1 in Horsham they broke into a shed and attempted to break into a house before being disturbed. On the same day, they broke into a house and stole a safe containing money and jewellery elsewhere in Sussex.
Eastaugh and Head admitted that on March 9 they broke into a home in Mount Hermon, Woking but were disturbed.
On the same day, they broke into a house and stole a camera in Lower Road, Bookham.
Kye King-Hardy, 25, of Lela Avenue in Hounslow, admitted handling stolen goods in relation to one burglary.
Judge Tapping said she would risk suspending his 12 month sentence for 12 months.
However he was told to adhere to a 10pm to 6am curfew and attend a rehabilitation and accredited programme.
DC Phil Carter, officer in charge of the case, said: "These men have been convicted of a series of high value burglaries in Surrey and Sussex earlier this year.
"The loss to victims was substantial with a total value for the seven offences in the region of £600,000. High value homes were targeted, some with occupants present during the offences - which is likely to have been very upsetting for them.
“I welcome the sentences handed down today - they reflect the very serious nature of these offences. This was a complex investigation completed with help from the Flying Squad whose assistance proved crucial in securing the defendants guilty pleas.
“As this case demonstrates Surrey Police takes burglary very seriously and burglars should be in no doubt that if you offend we will come after you and ensure you face justice.”
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