Overnight on Wednesday 15 June 2011, the Conwy Valley Railway Museum in Betws-y-Coed was broken into. The thieves disabled the three CCTV cameras by spraying over the lenses. They took more than £30,000 pounds worth of model railway engines and carriages. The thieves appeared to know what they were doing and police believe this was a targeted raid which has hit the small family-run business hard. They stole a massive amount of stock – around 180 items in all. Ninety percent of which was standard Hornby models many of which are mass produced and very hard to trace.
But the thieves also took seven Basset Lowke “0” gauge locomotives which are the more valuable engines. These are worth more almost £800 each. They also took two super model LGB locomotives valued at more than £2,000 each. Each of these models has an individual serial number which makes them easily identifiable. However the thieves left behind the boxes and the instruction manuals which will make the engines very hard to sell on legitimately. This isn’t an isolated incident. There was a similar burglary in Kent in May and North Wales Police has been liaising with officers there. They believe all the items may well be heading for foreign markets in Europe but would urge anyone who may have been offered anything similar for sale or seen them advertised to get in touch. Earlier in the year the museum and shop had been featured on the programme Great British Railway Journeys. There is a suggestion that the thieves may have been seen the stock etc on there and decided to carry out the theft.
Courtesy of the BBC
A model rail enthusiast has been left devastated after metal thieves stole the train he had been building for six months. Mr Smith, 70, had spent hundreds of hours recreating a five-foot-long model of a Great Western Dean goods engine. He had almost completed it when raiders forced their way into his garage and stole the miniature steam locomotive for its copper and brass parts. Mr Smith, of Bray Close, Horton Bank Top, Bradford, said: “I started building it last August and must have put 700 or 800 hours work into it.
I was only about a fortnight away from finishing it. “I kept the model on a stand in the garage next to the house. When I got up this morning I found the locks to the garage had been forced and the train had gone. All that was left was the chassis and wheels. “It had a copper boiler and copper and brass parts. It must have been taken by metal thieves. The copper boiler itself is worth £4,000 to £4,500, but no doubt they will take it to a scrapyard and get not very much for it. I am just devastated.”
Courtesy of the Telegraph & Argus
Following a burglary where more than 100 collectable toys were stolen from a house in Potters Bar, police are appealing for witnesses. On June 28, between 1pm and 4pm, the offenders forced open the door of a garage in Willow Way.
They stole a blue Otis bag which contained model buses, and a white box containing a number of Dinky toys.
Courtesy of the Times Series
A 33-year-old man is accused of stealing $20,000 in model trains and selling the collectibles for merely $700 online.
Eric Malm was arrested Wednesday and charged with burglary, dealing in stolen property and violating his felony drug offender probation. The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office said Malm stole the trains from a retiree’s home in Aripeka and sold them by placing an ad online. Malm knew the victim, the report states.
Courtesy of the Tampa Bay Times
A burglary took place in Mill Corner in Hingham last weekend. The incident happened between 4pm on Saturday 24 September and 11am on Sunday 25 September when suspect(s) gained access to a workshop which had been left insecure by mistake.
About 20 model trains worth about £2,000 were stolen along with numerous tools including drills and chisels.
Courtesy of Norfolk Constabulary
On Christmas day, Dan Johnson Jr. and two friends allegedly broke into a shed on his father’s property, where the coin collection was stowed. The burglars also reportedly stole tools and two safes, which had approximately 50 to 60 pounds of silver and jewelry inside.
The thieves took the coin collection, worth several thousand dollars, and dropped it into a Coinstar machine, where they received $450. They were unsuccessful in their attempts to put the silver coins into the machine and eventually took those to a local bank. “It was an inheritance, which made it even worse because I lost an inheritance that was meant to go forward for my children and grandchildren,” Johnson said of the collection that his son had purloined.
Courtesy of Yahoo News
An elderly stamp collector had his £80,000 collection stolen during a raid on his home. The victim, from Presteigne, Powys, who does not want to be named, spent 60 years building up his collection, which included several rare examples. Some of the stamps were recovered when two people were charged and then jailed for theft at Merthyr Crown Court. But many are still outstanding and the owner is appealing for their return. Dyfed-Powys Police said they believed other people were involved in the theft and were holding the missing stamps.
The raid happened in Presteigne at the beginning of December 2009, and to date only small quantities of stamps have been recovered, said officers.”This stamp collection was a life-long hobby for the victim and compiled over more than 60 years. The collection was not only financially valuable but more importantly were of huge sentimental value to the victim. The stolen stamps include quantities of rare penny black, penny red and two penny blue stamps.
Courtesy of BBC News
An international stamp dealer had his £400,000 collection stolen after armed robbers conned their way into his home and tied up him and his two sons. The 800-stamp collection included a number of Penny Blacks. The two robbers, who were dressed as police officers, forced their way into Steve Bennett’s home by confronting him as he came to the door and shouting: “This is a police raid – get to the floor.” When the 60-year-old and his adult sons did so they were tied up and pillow cases were put over their heads. A gun was fired in an apparent attempt to frighten the victims into submission. Police said the raid was “well-planned” and must have been based on prior information. The robbers then searched Mr Bennett’s home to find the collection, which contained stamps ranging in value from £50 to £5,000. One of the collector’s sons made a brave attempt to get help, scrambling out of a first floor window in the Torquay home wearing a blindfold. He fell heavily to the ground, where he was seen by a passing postman. The postman untied him and called police to the house but by the time armed officers arrived the robbers had already escaped with their £400,000 haul.
It included several Penny Blacks, the world’s first adhesive postal stamp, which are over 160 years old. They usually sell for £150 to £200 although fine examples can sell for more. Det Insp Paul Jones, of Devon and Cornwall Police, said: “This appears to be a very well-planned robbery which has taken a lot of time and planning to execute. “The victims remain shocked at what happened to them. It was very frightening for them.Arthur Ryan, a stamp dealer from Richmond in south-west London said: “The robbers will be able to get rid of the Penny Blacks abroad.”
Courtesy of the Telegraph
Thieves stole a Mickey Mantle baseball card valued at $4,000 from a Florida home Wednesday. John, who wishes to only go by his first name, showed us the door he says thieves pried open to get inside his DeLand, Fla. home, grabbing prized possessions.
“Went inside and pretty much everything of value was missing,” John said. The card was given to him by his father when he was just 13 years old. “So it’s something I hung on to and I planned on hanging on to for the rest of my life, but now it’s gone, and that’s something I’ll never get back it’s been stolen from me,” he said. The baseball card was in a safe, with a few other keepsakes- and John says it’s possible the thief doesn’t even know they have it. “I’ve always been big into collecting baseball cards and I’ve got thousands and thousands of them and this one here was a very special item that was given to me by my father,” he said.
Courtesy of Fox News