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Dartford, Gravesend and Bexley cigarette raiders strike again

PUBLISHED: 11:25 05 April 2012

CCTV footage of the two suspects breaking in to Vine Stores, Old Bexley Lane.

CCTV footage of the two suspects breaking in to Vine Stores, Old Bexley Lane.

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Police believe two men who are thought to be responsible for up to 15 raids on newsagents have struck again stealing £4,000 worth of cigarettes during the latest incident.

Two suspects stole a black Nissan Sunny car from Pilgrims Court, Dartford, at about 9.30pm on March 31 and broke in to Vine Stores, Old Bexley Lane. near Dartford, at about 3.25am on April 1.

They were caught on CCTV smashing the glass in the door of the newsagents before entering the shop and the car was later found abandoned in Bronte Grove, Dartford.

The break-in is believed to be linked to a series of cigarette burglaries across north and west Kent that have taken place this year resulting in the theft of up to £30,000 worth of cigarettes.

DC Richard Duckett said: “We would urge shopkeepers who sell a large amount of cigarettes to ensure they take extra security precautions so that they do not become victim of a similar burglary.

“Please be vigilant and ensure that your CCTV is fully functional; that your security blinds inside and outside your premises work properly and are secure; and that you leave the lights on in your shop overnight to ensure your internal CCTV system can function effectively.”

The two suspects are male. The first wore a balaclava and a grey tracksuit top with a lightweight grey jacket, grey bottoms and white trainers. He was slim and believed to be white. The second suspect wore a balaclava with a grey hooded top under a darker coat with white trainers and was of a larger build. Both wore gloves.

If you have any information about the break-in or have witnessed people acting suspiciously in the Temple Hill area of Dartford call Kent Police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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