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Two men jailed for their part in theft of £400,000 violin in Kilburn burglary

PUBLISHED: 16:39 12 November 2012 | UPDATED: 16:53 12 November 2012

This 'Pietro Guarneri of Venice' violin was stolen in Kilburn

This 'Pietro Guarneri of Venice' violin was stolen in Kilburn

Archant

Dean Barton, 23, of Brassey Road, Kilburn, and John Powles, 24, from Belsize Park, tried to sell ‘Pietro Guarneri of Venice’ instrument

Two men have been jailed for their part in the theft of a £400,000 violin stolen during a house burglary in Kilburn. Dean Barton, 23, of Brassey Road, Kilburn, and John Powles, 24, from Belsize Park, were convicted of burglary and handling stolen goods and sentenced to a total of 20 months.

The pair were snared in a sting operation which was launched after a music shop contacted the police with reports of a man trying to obtain a valuation for a ‘Pietro Guarneri of Venice’ violin.

The store had taken his mobile number so officers posed as prospective buyers and arranged a meeting at the Holiday Inn in Brent Cross where both men were arrested.

During the burglary, which took place on August 17 this year, thieves also made off with a laptop, gold fob watch and various other items of jewellery.

A similar burglary in Kilburn four days later resulted in two Apple Mac computers and a quantity of jewellery being stolen.

The thieves also took the keys to a BMW which they stole.

A selection of the goods stolen in both burglaries were discovered at the homes of both men following their arrest.

Both men were convicted of burglary and handling stolen goods in September.

Today at Harrow Crown Court, Barton was sentenced to nine months in prison for burglary and three months for handling stolen goods.

Powles was sentenced to eight months imprisonment for the violin burglary.

Detective Chief Inspector Steve Burns, from Brent Police, said: “Any theft is distressing, but experiencing loss following an intruder breaking into your home is particularly awful.

“Officers carried out an excellent fast time investigation demonstrating teamwork and professionalism that resulted in the arrest of two residential burglars and return the stolen property to their rightful owners.

“We will continue to track down those who commit burglary on this borough.”


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