Gang sentenced after south coast thefts

Sussex Police
Sussex Police

A gang has been sentenced after stealing cars and items from homes across the south coast.

Police said the eleven-strong gang was responsible for multiple thefts from Worthing to Peacehaven.

In March this year detectives from the Brighton Organised Crime Investigation Team arrested the gang after several months of investigation into the thefts of 20 cars.

Officers said some cars were stolen in burglaries and others were stolen from the street or from driveways along with other valuable property.

Police said the gang systematically sold property they stole from cars and victims’ homes such as valuable hand tools, laptops and some of the cars themselves.

The gang, based in East Brighton, were sentenced at Lewes Crown Court on Thursday (December 10) and Friday (December 11).

A spokesman for Sussex Police said: “Marcus Nye, 22, of Whitehawk Way, and Henry King, 19, of Ninfield Place, Brighton, had previously been convicted of conspiracy to convert criminal property. They both received 12 months imprisonment suspended for two years and were ordered to carry out 200 hours unpaid work.

“Wiliam Westein, 19, of Blackman Street: Guiseppe Baker, 19, of Romsey Close: Bradlee Martin, 20, of Whitehawk Way: Dylan Lovatt, 18, of Ninfield Place: Harry Hall, 18, of Moulsecoomb Way, Jake Hall, 19, of Widdicombe Way; Harry Avis, 17, of Swanborough Drive; and a 17-year old boy, all of Brighton, had previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to convert criminal property.

“Westein was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment.

“Martin and Lovatt were each sentenced to nine months imprisonment suspended for two years.

“Harry Hall was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment in a young offenders institution.

“Jake Hall was sentenced to six months imprisonment

“Harry Avis was sentenced to a 24 month detention and training order, and the 17-year old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was given a nine month youth referral order.

“Lewis Gent, 22, of Robertson Road, had admitted two counts of handling stolen property. He was sentenced to nine months imprisonment suspended for two years and was ordered to carry out 200 hours unpaid work.”

Seven of the cars were sold by the gang but were recovered by police as part of the operation, officers added.

A further 13 stolen vehicles were recovered by the police before the gang could sell them on.

Detective Constable Jane Walker said; “This was a complex and detailed investigation involving many officers working closely to gather evidence about the movements of the gang.

“Car crime is not always perceived as serious crime but can have a devastating impact on victims. Two of the cars recovered were from Motorbility designed for use by disabled people, and one stolen just before Christmas contained a boot full of wrapped Christmas presents.”

“We worked alongside our colleagues in the South East Regional Organised Crime Unit during the investigation and will continue to join our efforts in order to tackle any organised crime groups who operate in Brighton.”

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