A TEAM of burglars conspired together to carry out break-ins during which they targeted the keys to expensive cars worth a total of more than £1million.
The Coventry-based gang struck at more than 50 houses across Warwickshire and Leicestershire during a seven-month spree in 2019, a judge at Warwick Crown Court has heard.
Three of the team, Keanan Walker, Myles Campbell and a 17-year-old who cannot be named because of his age, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to burgle and conspiracy to steal.
Appearing on the day before his 23rd birthday, Walker, of Westminster Road, Coventry, was jailed for five-and-a-half years after the judge said he was taking into account a sentence he has already served for a burglary committed during the same period.
The 17-year-old, also from Coventry, who had an extensive list of previous convictions and is serving a life sentence for murder, was sentenced to six-and-a-half years detention.
And a warrant was issued for the arrest of 22-year-old Campbell, of The Moorfields, Coventry, after he failed to turn up for the hearing.
Prosecutor Andrew Wallace said: “This is a very large conspiracy carried out between the 1st of April 2019 and the 24th of December that year.
“It involves 51 separate addresses and a very wide geographical trawl in Warwickshire and Leicestershire looking for expensive vehicles to steal to a value which exceeds £1million.
“All of these defendants are serious criminals, and burglary and theft seems to be a lifestyle for them.”
The 17-year-old, whose previous convictions include two earlier conspiracies to burgle, as well as the murder conviction, had been linked to 15 of the offences.
And Walker was involved in 23 of the offences, but has already served a prison sentence imposed in January last year for a single burglary committed towards the end of the period.
“The object of the conspiracy was to obtain vehicles by the commission of burglaries, sometimes to get the car keys, but on other occasions there is a theft of the vehicle which is very close to being a robbery.”
Simon Hunka, for Walker, said he became involved because at the time he had got deeply into debt over his drug use, and had been told he had to pay it off.
Judge Anthony Potter said that if he had been dealing with him for all the offences together, he would have imposed a sentence of ‘in excess of seven years,’ but would reduce it because of the term he had already served.