Burglars ransack Highbury house and 74-year-old shivers in garden for five hours waiting for cops

PUBLISHED: 14:05 25 September 2018 | UPDATED: 14:05 25 September 2018

Sabina Burgugu (74) sits outside her home. Picture: Polly Hancock

Sabina Burgugu (74) sits outside her home. Picture: Polly Hancock


Burglars ransacked an elderly woman’s Highbury home – and she was left “shivering” in her garden for five hours waiting for the police to arrive.

Sabina Burgugu (74) sits outside her home. Picture: Polly HancockSabina Burgugu (74) sits outside her home. Picture: Polly Hancock

Sabina Burgugu, 74, of Fieldway Crescent, returned from visiting her daughter on September 14 to find her home of 45 years had been broken into.

She says thieves stole items of sentimental value, including a safe containing £15,000 worth of gold, which her late husband had given her.

Police records show the pensioner called cops for the first time just before 6pm – but officers didn’t arrive until 10.40pm.

“I was in shock and I’m still feeling badly ill because of this,” said Sabina.

Sabina Burgugu at her home in Higbury East which was burgled. Picture: Sabina BurguguSabina Burgugu at her home in Higbury East which was burgled. Picture: Sabina Burgugu

“I rang the police many times and it took five hours before they came – I was shacking and shivering under a blanket in my front garden because they told me not to go inside.”

She claims a neighbour spotted three men leaving her property carrying a rug, which “looked like it was hiding something heavy”. Sabina believes this was her safe.

Sabina added: “I phoned the police about 25 times and they kept giving me different excuses – at one point someone said I ‘wasn’t a priority’, which was really upsetting – I can’t sleep at night since it happened.

“When I came home I found everything ruined. They made my house so messy. They took my money, they took my gold and they stole jewellery belonging to me and my children.”

Sabina says she’s still waiting to hear back from police about their investigation. But officers did visit her the following day to “offer reassurance and crime prevention advice”.

“I’ve lived in this house for 45 years,” said Sabina. “But nothing like this has ever happened to me – oh my god, this is so awful.”

A Met Police spokesperson said: “The call was graded and officers responded as soon as they were able to, given there were no suspects on scene.

“The property had been broken into via the front door sometime from 4.30pm that day and a safe containing a quantity of jewellery stolen.

“The suspects are described as three men of Eastern European appearance – enquires are ongoing.”

They did not explain why Ms Burgugu had been asked to wait outside for so long.

Anyone with information about the break-in can contact the cops on 101, quoting reference CRIS 2722046/18.

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