TWO men have been charged with a plot to commit a spate of burglaries which saw 17 cars stolen from drives across South Yorkshire after the owners’ homes were burgled for the keys.
Lee Mills, aged 39, and Scott Shakeshaft, aged 27, are accused of conspiring to commit burglary and conspiring to steal motor vehicles in Sheffield and Rotherham.
The charges relate to the thefts of 17 vehicles worth £315,000.
They allegedly broke into homes between August and November 2011, stole keys, then pinched the vehicles.
A Crown Prosecution Service spokeswoman said: “They were all souped up, top end cars for their models. The parts were found in a chop shop in Bradford, West Yorkshire. The prosecution will argue the cars were stolen for their parts.”
The first burglary was allegedly committed on August 9 2011 in Fulwood, Sheffield, when a Vauxhall Zafira was stolen.
Also stolen were: a Seat Leon from Ecclesall, a VW Golf R32 and a black Ford Focus from Totley, a Seat Leon from Chapeltown, a Skoda Fabia from Norton, a Land Rover Freelander from Fulwood, a Vauxhall Astra from Hackenthorpe, a Vauxhall Corsa from Chapeltown, a Seat Leon from Ecclesfield, an Audi and a BMW from Brinsworth, an Audi A3 from Meadowhead, an Audi and a BMW from Bents Green, an Audi from the Manor, a VW Golf R32 from Hackenthorpe, a Seat Leon from Chapeltown, a Honda Civic from Brampton and a Vauxhall Astra from Rawmarsh.
Last month The Star revealed between January and November 22 869 ‘two-in-one’ burglaries were reported.
The figures were released in error by South Yorkshire Police which has since released new figures.
The force said there were 638 offences reported this year, down from 650 in 2011. In 2010 there were 629 offences reported, 692 in 2009 and 638 in 2008.
Temporary Detective Inspector Mark Cockayne said: “The public should keep doors locked even if inside, and close and lock windows when leaving a room.
“Don’t leave keys, or valuable property, in sight of doors or windows where they could be hooked out.”