Gang who targeted Bedfordshire homes jailed for more than 25 years for conspiracy to commit burglaries

The men were sentenced at St Albans Crown Court on Tuesday

By Holly Patel
Friday, 21st August 2020, 4:16 pm
Updated Friday, 21st August 2020, 4:18 pm

Five men have been sentenced to more than 25 years in prison between them for conspiracy to commit 29 residential burglaries across Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, London and Surrey.

The initial arrest happened on Monday, January 6, 2020, whilst Hertsmere Scorpion officers were on proactive patrol and spotted a vehicle that was believed to be connected to a dwelling burglary.

With assistance from the Mobile Scorpion Team, the Road Policing Unit, Essex Police, the Metropolitan Police Service and the National Police Air Service (NPAS), the vehicle was pursued into London where it was eventually forced to stop on the A406 and the men were arrested.

Sergio Saravia Mario Fernandez-Garrido and Christian Rubio

Detective Constable Paul Cullinan of Hertfordshire’s Specialist Investigation Team took over the onward investigation.

Over the following months whilst the suspects, who are all Chilean nationals, were on remand in prison, DC Cullinan built a compelling case to reflect the totality of this team’s offending.

Hertfordshire offences were identified in Welwyn, Letchworth, Hertford, Elstree and Rickmansworth along with multiple offences in London, Surrey, Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire.

The burglars would predominantly target large houses in order to steal jewellery.

Alexis Castro and Carlos Aranis

Some stolen jewellery was recovered from the defendants upon arrest, and two other large hauls of jewellery were recovered from a river in Walthamstow. Much of this was identified and returned to the rightful owners.

All five, who had previously pleaded guilty to their parts of the conspiracy, appeared at St Albans Crown Court on Tuesday, August 18, where HHJ Grey, having taken into account early guilty pleas, sentenced as follows:

- Alexis Castro, 38, of no fixed abode, was jailed for five years six months

- Christian Rubio, 39, of no fixed abode was jailed for five years

- Carlos Aranis, 31, of no fixed abode, was jailed for five years

- Mario Fernandez-Garrido, 34, of no fixed abode, was jailed for four years ten months

- Sergio Saravia, 38, of no fixed abode, was jailed for five years nine months.

At the end of their sentences, the men will be deported.

DC Cullinan said: “We’re delighted these men have been taken off the streets and will no longer pose a threat to our communities.

“These men had been in the country for only a matter of months and appeared to have immediately started targeting affluent homes in order to steal jewellery.

“The issue of ‘crime tourism’ is recognised by the police, and we work extremely hard to bring those responsible to justice."