SUSPECTED members of an organised crime gang believed to be responsible for up to 80 burglaries in rural Chester have been arrested.

This morning (Thursday 28 November) detectives raided five homes on Watery Road, North Road, Nelson Street, Walnut Street and Hampden Court in Wrexham.

Two men, aged 23 and 26, and two women aged 26 and 28 were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit burglary between August 2017 and July 2018.

They are currently in custody waiting to be questioned by detectives.

Today’s strike comes following a joint 18 month investigation by Chester Local Policing Unit and North Wales Police after farms and large homes in the Eaton, Malpas, Manley, Chester and Huxley areas were targeted by burglars.

Since April 2018 property was broken into with items including quad bikes, saddles, motorbikes and camera equipment, worth up to one million pounds, was stolen.

During this morning’s raids officers seized a quad bike and power tools.

Detective Constable Gareth Yates said: “This morning’s arrests are a huge and positive step not only to the investigation but to the rural community who have been affected by these crimes.

“We understand how devastating this has been for victims and the long lasting emotional damage it has caused.

“The burglaries were well planned and organised and required a lengthy operation over a long period of time to get to the root of those we believe to be involved.

“I hope today reassures the public that we do act on information that is provided to us and take action when these crimes are committed both in Chester and the surrounding rural areas.”

Residents who have information or believe serious and organised crime has taken place in their community are encouraged to report it to Cheshire Police by calling 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously via their website