Cardiff Crown Court
Alan Skavydis, 56, and Paul Stephenson, 58, were sentenced to six years and two months’ imprisonment each and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglary at Cardiff Crown Court. Image: Cardiff Crown Court by Ham via Geograph.

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Alan Skavydis, 56, and Paul Stephenson, 58, committed crimes over a 16 year period – from June 2001 to October 2016 - across three different police force areas.

The pair targeted dealers and collectors at antiques fairs across the country. They would follow people home from fairs – often travelling hundreds of miles to track them – and would then burgle their homes days later.

Millie Davies, senior crown prosecutor at the Crown Prosecution Service Cymru-Wales, said: “These men were calculated and professional in the way they chose their victims, sometimes following them across the UK.

“The prosecution showed evidence which proved that for many years Skavydis and Stephenson had been plotting to steal valuable antiques from collectors and their actions were linked to several burglaries.”

Evidence

The police were reported to have found soiled toilet paper in the garden of one of the homes that contained DNA of both defendants. Officers then used Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology and CCTV to identify Skavydis and Stephenson at several of the antique fairs.

Davies added: “The ANPR evidence played an important part in the case presented by the CPS to identify how the defendants had followed their victims home and gave them little choice but to enter guilty pleas.”

The pair pleaded guilty at Cardiff Crown Court to conspiracy to commit burglary and were sentenced to an additional two months’ imprisonment for failing to surrender to bail in February.