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Gang of thieves jailed for pub raids; three-year probe by police to snare robbers.

Byline: TOM EDEN Reporter tom.eden@trinitymirror.com @TomEden11

A GANG of thieves has been jailed after stealing PS75,000 of cash and goods from pubs across the North East in a spate of burglaries.

The four men travelled down from Glasgow to target pubs throughout the region during a four-month campaign of crime.

Nearly three years since they first targeted a Gateshead pub, stealing PS795 in cash and causing significant damage, three of the culprits have now been locked up.

CCTV footage of their burglary at the Three Tuns Pub in Gateshead in April 2014 has now been released by Northumbria Police.

The video shows three men ransacking the pub, smashing fruit machines and pouring the contents of a till into a bag.

Officers linked the burglary to a further 13 thefts which had taken place across Northumbria, Scotland, Durham and Cleveland, piecing together a complex investigation to identify those responsible.

This extremely case that over a geographical Detective Chris Northumbria Police say detectives soon noticed a pattern and used witness statements, number plate recognition, mobile phone data and forensic evidence to link the burglaries to an organised crime group, but not before the gang has stolen PS11,000 in cash from the PTE Staff Club in Byker on May 18, 2014.

In total, four men were charged and all admitted committing the crimes at a hearing, before being sentenced on Friday.

The four, who all lived in Glasgow, are: | Christopher Buchmann, 28, jailed for three years and three months. | Alexander Ortiz, 30, jailed for two years and five months.

| Robert Gauld, 34, jailed for two years.

| William Lawson, 58, handed a sixmonth suspended prison sentence. Following the case, Detective Constable Chris Neil said he was glad the men had finally seen justice for their crimes.

He said: "This was an extremely complex case that stretched over a huge geographical area and a number of different police force areas.

"This was an intentional ploy to make it more difficult for detectives to identify this group, and which is why it has taken nearly three years for us to put these men behind was an complex stretched huge area Constable Neil bars. "The men in this case intentionally targeted public houses and commercial premises, causing significant amount of damage and making off with a huge amount of stolen goods.

"A lot of good detective work has gone into identifying these individuals and gathering the evidence that has ultimately led to their conviction.

"These sentences are testament to the efforts of Northumbria Police's Central CID as well as detectives from Police Scotland, Durham Constabulary and Cleveland Police."

burglary to a which had Northumbria, Durham a a witness number recognition, data and to link the burglaries complex case huge geographical number of force "This bars. "The case public houses premises"This was an extremely complex case that stretched over a huge geographical area Detective Constable Chris Neil

CAPTION(S):

William Lawson, 58 Robert Gauld, 34 Christopher Buchmann, 28 Alexander Ortiz, 30

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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jul 10, 2017
Words:499
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