A man from Bury St Edmunds has been sentenced to three years in jail in connection with a string of motor vehicle thefts that totalled over £30,000.
31-year-old Ricky Davis of Maundy Close in Bury St Edmunds appeared before Ipswich Crown Court yesterday, (29 September).
It follows guilty pleas at an earlier hearing where he pleaded guilty to three counts of theft of motorcycles that took place in Brandon in December 2020, Bury St Edmunds in October 2020 and Bury again in November 2020.
At further hearings, he also pleaded guilty to theft of a motor vehicle in June 2021 which was another motorbike in Thetford and a fifth guilty plea in Bury St Edmunds in August 2021 to a further theft of a motorcycle. The value of three of these five bikes was around £12,000 alone.
Once charged with these offences he went on to engage with the Operation Converter team and admitted a further 12 thefts of motor vehicles that took place between 27 October 2020 and 10 October 2021 in Bury St Edmunds, Brandon and Thetford. 10 were in Suffolk and two were in Norfolk. These were all various makes and models of motorbikes – the total value of these 12 thefts was just under £30,000.
Duncan Etchells of the Op Converter team said: “Davis had a notable modus operandi of arranging to meet people who would travel from all over the country to sell their motorbikes after they’d advertised them online.
“Davis would then meet them, and under the pretence of taking the bike for a test ride would then ride off on the bike, never to be seen again. His crimes attracted a lot of social media attention in the Bury St Edmunds and Thetford areas over the period of his criminality, but to see him behind bars will hopefully give some closure for those people he stole from.
“This should also serve as a timely reminder to offenders in Suffolk that we will use any and all available investigative techniques to bring you to justice for all your offending.”
Suffolk has seen a drop in motor vehicle crime in the past two years. Comparing the 12 months from July 2020 to June 2021 with July 2021 to June 2022, there was a drop of 12.8% in theft from a motor vehicle, while theft of a motor vehicle saw a drop of 11.3% over the same period.
This is the best figure for the east of England region and for theft of a motor vehicle, it is the only force of the six to see a decline. Officers are putting this down to the fact of some good proactive work by local police in tackling motor vehicle theft over recent months.
In a recent inspection by His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary the force was graded as ‘good’ in six areas of business out of 10, including ‘preventing crime’ and ‘disrupting serious organised crime’ with the report stating it has a ‘well-established process for managing organised crime.’
Operation Converter is an initiative aimed at encouraging offenders to admit their crimes. This has benefits for all – police are able to give victims some peace of mind that an offender has been caught for the burglary of their home or the theft of their property and the individual has the opportunity to clear their slate, so they can have a fresh start when they are released from prison, without the possibility they will later be traced for a further offence. Offenders have to give sufficient detail for officers to be sure they have committed the crime and these offences are then ‘taken into consideration’ at sentencing.