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Copy of email received Wednesday 10th November, 2010

Two Jailed For 12 Years For Distraction Burglaries Monday, November 8, 2010

Two men who targeted vulnerable and elderly people in West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire and Derbyshire for cash have been jailed at Leeds Crown Court today.

Thomas Hanrahan of Helmsley Walk, Leeds and
Felix Hanrahan of Charles Avenue, Bradford

 Both aged 31, were sentenced to 7.5 and 4.5 years respectively after admitting a conspiracy to commit burglaries in Wakefield, Castleford, Pontefract, Sheffield and Alfreton, Derbyshire between August 2009 and January 2010.

Over the six month period the pair travelled around the region knocking on doors of elderly residents and asking to come inside to check utilities, before distracting the occupant and stealing cash and any valuable items.

On one occasion just over £8,000 in cash and £28,000 in premium bonds were stolen from an 86-year-old woman in Castleford however all of the cash has been returned to the victim.

Hanrahan and Hanrahan were arrested on Monday 4th January in Oulton near Leeds following a national search. After their arrest officers searched an address near to Thomas' house and recovered a large amount of cash and jewellery.

In February officers released photos of 50 items of jewellery in an attempt to locate the owners and detectives are now renewing their appeal. Please see West Yorkshire Police website for the photographs of the jewellery.

Detective Chief Inspector Mick McDermott of West Yorkshire Police’s Crime Division said: “These offences are despicable, they were committed against frail and vulnerable people who are often unable to defend themselves.

“Burglaries have a lasting effect on their victims; your home is a place where you should be able to feel safe and secure and not a target for criminals.

“These men are behind bars as a result of excellent joint working between officers from Crime Division and Wakefield Division and also the assistance of the local community.

“I hope the victims of these men can take comfort in knowing that they are now in prison.

"We are still trying to locate the owners of some jewellery which was recovered when the Hanrahans were arrested. If you recognise any of the items please get in contact with us so we can reunite you with your possessions." Please see the West Yorkshire Police website.

West Yorkshire Police would like to advise residents that it’s important to ask for identification before allowing people into their homes. Genuine callers will always carry ID and this can be verified by contacting their company. Any suspicious activity must be reported to police.

If you recognise any of the jewellery in the pictures re-released today, please contact Wakefield CID on 01924 206233.    Check Here for stolen items ?? (Mel Ashton)

Wakefield North West Neighbourhood Policing Team
Tel no: 01924 294 671

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