Essex Police seek to return items stolen by Colchester burglary trio


- Credit: Archant

Police in Essex are looking to reunite stolen property with its owners following the convictions of a prolific burglary trio.

Rosanna Ruffell, 23, her brother George Ruffell, 18, and a 16-year-old boy, all from Colchester, were sentenced to a total of six years and nine months imprisonment for their part in a series of burglaries across Essex, Kent, Suffolk, Sussex and Surrey between April and June this year.

More than 100 items of stolen property were recovered during the operation but so far detectives have been unable to trace the owners of the stolen rings, necklaces, watches and electrical items.

Police now believe the trio’s burglary spree may have spread further afield, potentially as far as Birmingham, and are keen to reunite the items with their rightful owners.

Ruffell, her brother, and the 16-year-old boy hired a car and worked together to break into houses in search of items they could sell for profit.

They were charged in July following a forensic lead at a burglary in Suffolk .

They pleaded guilty at Chelmsford Crown Court in September and were sentenced at the same court on December 17.

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Rosanna Ruffell was sentenced to two years and six months imprisonment, George Ruffell was jailed for four years and three months and the 16-year-old boy was given a youth rehabilitation order.

Dc Steven Walker, from Colchester CID, said: “The sentencing of these burglars marks the end of a wide-scale operation covering five counties and I’m sure their imprisonment will have stopped many more offences being committed across the region.

“However, there is still more work to be done and we’re now trying to return some of the stolen property recovered during the course of our operation to its rightful owners. We know that the trio travelled across five counties and possibly much further afield across the country looking for homes to target, so we’re asking anyone who has been burgled between April and June to take a look at the photos.

“The convictions of Rosanna and George Ruffell and their 16-year-old co-defendant are the result of detectives from Essex, Kent, Sussex, Surrey and Suffolk police services working together to share intelligence. I’m pleased the victims of their crimes have now been able to see them brought to justice and hope we are able to reunite people with items taken from their homes.”

An album of photographs of the stolen items has been published on the Essex Police Flickr page, which can be viewed at;

Anyone who recognises any of the items and thinks they may belong to them is asked to call Colchester CID on 101 and quote Operation Spalding and the reference number shown on the photograph.