Married couple convicted after teaming up to carry out 38 late night burglaries in Upminster and Hornchurch

A general view of Basildon Crown Court in Basildon, Essex.

A general view of Basildon Crown Court in Basildon, Essex. - Credit: PA WIRE

A 95-year-old resident was just one of 38 victims who had property stolen by a husband and wife who targeted elderly peoples’ homes.

Rifat and Sonya Mehmet, of Parsonage Road, Grays, Essex, were sentenced after carrying out the thefts during a five-week period.

They were arrested by police back in October 2015 by Havering’s Safer Neighbourhood Team in Grays after stopping a red BMW.

Basildon Crown Court heard how the duo worked together during the raids in Upminster and Hornchurch.

Mr Mehmet would climb fences and gates or use back alleys to burgle sheds and garages during the night, stealing large quantities of power tools, alcohol, groceries and bicycles.


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His wife would assist him by keeping watch and loading the vehicle with stolen goods when he returns.

Many of the victims were elderly and some did not notice they had been burgled immediately, often hearing from neighbours before checking their own premises.

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While some were lucky and got items returned by police, many others suffered thousands of pounds of losses and had little returned with many of the goods stolen sold at car boot sales.

A protracted investigation involving forensic science, mobile phone evidence and enquiries to trace owners of property recovered led to a 50 count indictment.

The case was concluded last Tuesday after Mr Mehmet pleaded guilty to 38 of the 50 count burglary indictment (the remaining 12 will lie on file).

He was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment on each count, concurrent to each other but consecutive to other two sentences for separate matters of careless driving and offensive weapon.

It means he will serve 30 months immediate imprisonment in total.

Mrs Mehmet was sentenced back on July 26 after pleading guilty to 38 of the 50 count burglary indictment (the remaining 12 will lie on file).

She was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment suspended for 12 months for each count running concurrent to each other and a rehabilitation order for 30 days.

Were you a victim of these burglaries? If so, please email ryan.tute@archant.co.uk

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