Read Time:1 Minute, 32 Second
Dominik Kuzio, 31 of no fixed abode, was convicted at Southwark Crown Court on Monday, 18 October of breaking into Simon Bendall’s Westminster home and was given a sentence of four years’ imprisonment.
Mr Bendall, who died in June 2019 aged 80, was a world-renowned expert on ancient coins and was a collector, scholar and dealer. His specialty was Byzantine coins and he had gathered an extensive personal collection over his lifetime.
The court heard that on 12 February 2018, Kuzio forced his way into Mr Bendall’s apartment in Ashley Mansions SW1V, while Mr Bendall was out enjoying an afternoon with his friends at a local pub.
Mr Bendall returned home at around 17:30 to find his home had been ransacked.
His collection of ancient coins, medals, spoons and watches, worth over £100,000, had been stolen, along with a laptop.
Police were called and forensic examiners scoured the scene, locating DNA that was found to match Kuzio.
He was located, arrested and interviewed before being bailed. However he failed to answer his bail date, or acknowledge when he was charged.
Kuzio was subsequently arrested in relation to another matter for which he appeared in court in 2020. However he was given court bail and and has not been seen since.
Detectives have worked tirelessly to track him down but as yet he has not been located. Officers believe he may potentially have fled to Poland, but remain open-minded that he could still be in the UK.
They urge anyone who has information as to Kuzio’s whereabouts, or that of Mr Bendall’s coin collection, to make contact immediately.
Anyone who has information that could help police is asked to call 101 or tweet @MetCC ref CRIS 6507683/18.
Alternatively, information can be given anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.