Distraction thieves take £70,000 of gold from elderly couple

Roden Street, Google Street View

Roden Street, Google Street View - Credit: Archant

Crime is identical to a burglary that took place in Highbury last September

Councillor Paul Convery

Councillor Paul Convery - Credit: Archant

Burglars have stolen £70,000 of gold jewellery from an elderly Holloway couple in a distraction theft identical to one reported in the borough last year.

The first of the crooks led the home owner in his 80s in the kitchen of his Roden Street property at about 10.30am on Thursday last week (June 25) to check for a leak, ignoring his requests for identification.

He then asked the pensioner to put the kettle on while two accomplices went upstairs, one of which led the man’s wife, in her 70s, downstairs.

When the couple’s 35-year-old daughter came home and confronted the men, the last of the three came running downstairs with his hands full of the jewellery and £200 in cash – before the gang made off in a metallic blue hatchback.

The method is identical to a burglary at an 83-year-old woman’s home in Highbury Grange in September last year, when £200 was stolen from the victim’s purse. Police are yet to charge anyone for the crime despite a Crimestoppers appeal with a £3,000 reward.

One of the couple’s daughters, 29, said the family had managed to obtain CCTV footage from the local school which shows the burglars going around the house three times before the theft.

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“I’m scared for others out there, they’re targeting elderly pensioners,” she said.

“My mum only recently came out of a brain haemorrhage and has arthritis. My dad has been marching up and down the road since it happened.

“The experience they’re getting from the police is very poor, my sister has been doing all the leg work.”

Cllr Paul Convery, Islington Council’s executive member for housing, said residents should call the police immediately if anyone enters their home without their permission.

“Anyone from electrical companies or Thames Water for a

start will have visible identification and will almost certainly have a utility vehicle parked outside,

“If somebody just walks in to your home call the police.”

Islington Police said they were looking for three men. Suspect one is described as a white male, 6ft tall and was wearing a navy flat cap, navy jacket and black trousers.

Suspect two is described as white male, 5ft 9ins tall, wearing a light coloured top.

While the third man is described as a white male, 5ft 5ins tall.

Police would like to hear from anyone who was in the Roden Street area around this time and heard or saw anything suspicious.

“Call Detective Constable Joe Marsden of Islington Police on 101. Alternatively if you wish to remain anonymous call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”