Jail for burglars labelled ‘plague of locusts’ by judge

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FIVE burglars who travelled across Boston and other parts of East Anglia like a ‘plague of locusts’ have been jailed for a total of 28 years.

The men, all from Latvia, but based in Wisbech, targeted homes of the elderly in the Boston, Sleaford, Spalding and Skegness areas, as well as those in Norfolk, Cambridgeshire and Suffolk.

Two burglaries took place in the Boston area in September last year. The first was in Gipsey Bridge and the second in Rochford Tower Lane, Boston. In both incidents, jewellery and cash were stolen.

The investigations were led by detectives in Norfolk leading to their arrests in September last year.

During the case Judge Nicholas Coleman said it had been impossible to do justice to the misery the men had caused and likened their criminal behaviour to a ‘plague of locusts’.

Two defendants pleaded guilty to conspiracy to burgle and were sentenced last week at Norwich Crown Court.

Genadj Rakitsky, 20, was sentenced to three years imprisonment and Mihails Sirokovs, 25, was sentenced to seven years. Both were from Milner Road, Wisbech.

Following a two-and-a-half week trial at Norwich Crown Court two of the defendants were found guilty by a jury of conspiracy to burgle between June and September 2011.

Oscar Beitans, 25, of Victoria Road, Wisbech, was sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment while Jurijs Kazacoks, 23, of Syralense, King’s Lynn, was jailed for seven years.

Artur Skrabo, 18, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to one count of burglary relating to an incident in September 2011 in Hunstanton and one count of attempted burglary in connection with an incident at Snettisham. He was sentenced to a total of 18 months imprisonment.

Det Insp Stuart Chapman of Norfolk Police added: “These men targeted homes as an organised group. Their actions can only be described as despicable for the misery and upset they have caused across the region.”

Sentencing Beitans and Kazacoks, Judge Coleman said: “You are both from Latvia. Your conduct and that of your friends who have admitted their guilt has in my judgement cast a dark shadow over the reputation of the people of Latvia, who are good, honest citizens who come to this country genuinely intending to better themselves.”

A sixth suspect charged with offences is due to stand trial in December.