Two men, who jointly conspired to commit robbery and theft against predominantly elderly women over a period of eight days were jailed at Harrow Crown Court on Tuesday, 15 May for more than 14 years.
Shaun Moorhouse, 32 of no fixed abode was sentenced to six years imprisonment for conspiracy to commit theft and conspiracy to commit robbery.
William Moorhouse, 30 of no fixed abode was sentenced to eight years and seven months imprisonment for conspiracy to commit theft, conspiracy to commit robbery and two burglaries committed on Monday, 8 January on Westview Close in Brent and Sunday, 28 January on Balmoral Road, Brent.
Between Friday, 19 January and Friday, 26 January, officers in Brent identified 21 offences made up of robbery, theft and theft of motor vehicles
On Thursday, 22 March, at Harrow Crown Court both men jointly entered guilty pleas to conspiracy counts concerning 15 offences listed against them. William also pleaded guilty to two burglary offences.
The linked series of offending began on Friday, 19 January when a 74-year-old female victim was robbed of her Volkswagen Golf on Barnhill Road in Wembley. During the robbery, both suspects fought with the elderly victim, knocking her to the floor, before driving off in her vehicle.
Further offences took place during the eight-day period, mainly against women aged between 65 and 88 years old.
During the attacks, a number of victims were pushed to the floor and dragged along the street, whilst holding on to their handbags, which were being grabbed. The robberies and thefts followed a similar pattern in which the brothers used vehicles they had stolen to pull up alongside their victim and either rob or steal their handbags. During the course of their offending, a silver Vauxhall Astra, a black Audi A3 and a grey Volkswagen Golf were used by the brothers.
On Tuesday, 23 January at around 09:00hrs, a black Audi was stolen from Manor Drive in Wembley. At around 09:15hrs the car was used in a distraction theft within Waitrose carpark in Brent Cross, whereby the suspects crashed their vehicle at low speed into the victim’s car. The men then stole the victim’s handbag from within her car. At 09:17hrs the brothers went on to snatch a handbag from a woman walking along Mead Place in Brent.
At around 09:20hrs the men abandoned the stolen vehicle before attempting to steal another vehicle from a 71-year-old female victim in a Tesco car park on Tilling Road. A passer-by intervened and took the keys back from the men, preventing them from stealing the car.
A proactive operation was launched by officers and on Sunday, 28 January, following a burglary of a 77-year-old man’s address in Balmoral Road, William Moorhouse was arrested. The following day Shaun Moorhouse was arrested by officers during a routine patrol on Oldfield Road in Brent.
Detective Sergeant Richard Lewsley, from Brent CID, said: “I would like to thank all of those witnesses, victims and CCTV providers whose evidence collectively has been instrumental in bringing these offenders to justice. Many of these cases saw members of the public rush to the aid of, and provide support, to victims of crime.
“This sentence sends out a clear message to those engaged in crime that despite attempts to evade police, all efforts will be taken to bring offenders to justice. It is clear the court have taken a strong position in administering this sentence.
“The response from detectives and constables across Brent and Harrow is testament to the dedication and perseverance shown in the face of what was a rapidly expanding linked series of offending.”