A NATIONWIDE investigation led by detectives from Staffordshire Police, which resulted in eight men being jailed for 55 years for jewellery raids, is the subject of a television programme this evening.
‘Jewel Raiders’ from ITV Tonight will be shown (Sept 21) at 7.30pm on ITV1.
An organised crime group (OCG) of Romanian men struck at 11 jewellers’ shops between November 2015 and September 2016 spanning nine force areas from Kent to Lancashire and netting more than £3m worth of stock, including jewellery and watches.
They came to our attention as a force when they smashed their way into Beaverbrooks, Hanley, in the early hours of March 10 last year. They took £400,000 of watches after smashing their way into the Potteries centre store with sledgehammers and setting a fire to distract emergency services.
The documentary features interviews with senior investigating officer DCI Ricky Fields, and DI Phil Bryan, of Staffordshire Police’s Force Safeguarding and Investigations (North).
The group received training and had to comply with a strict code. They had an interesting way of working which included camping a few miles from their target and cycling to the site to avoid detection.
They would block roads using tape or rope and set fires to hamper police response. They were forensically aware and adopted tactics to store their waste and remove traces to avoid detection.
Assistant Chief Constable, Emma Barnett, said: “These sentences are the result of the support from our communities and the hard work and attention to detail of our staff and officers. Our detectives took the lead in a major nationwide investigation and secured convictions