Romanian gang who targeted elderly and vulnerable jailed
A gang of Romanian thieves – including a convicted murderer – have been jailed for stealing almost £20,000 from elderly and vulnerable people in Hertfordshire and Essex, including Bishop's Stortford.
Marius Mereson, 40, of no fixed address, Razvan Dorosin, 33, of Longbridge Road, Dagenham, and Carmen Feraru, 47, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to conspiring with others to steal bank cards, cash and other items between July 31 and November 7 last year.
During this time, the Independent reported on several incidents in which elderly women lost thousands of pounds from their bank accounts after thieves stole their purses outside supermarkets in Bishop's Stortford.
At St Albans Crown Court on Thursday, February 7, Judge Nigel Lithman QC jailed Mereson for 32 months and Dorosin and Feraru for 27 months each.
All three had previous convictions in this country and their homeland, where in 1998 Mereson was jailed for eight years for murder.
The court heard that they had travelled to the UK for the purpose of stealing and that they targeted 16 people with a total loss of £19,790.
The gang carried out their crimes across Hertfordshire and Essex; they also targeted people in Waltham Cross, Buntingford, Hoddesdon, Hatfield, St Albans, Harpenden, Watford, Berkhamsted and Hemel Hempstead.
Detective Constable Simon Smith said: “These three individuals came to the UK from Romania with the sole intention of committing crime. They worked together to prey on the elderly and vulnerable who they saw as easy targets.
"Their eldest victim was a 98-year-old man. His bank card was stolen and they attempted to use it to pay for thousands of pounds worth of goods. They also targeted a partially sighted woman and several people in their 80s.
“This trio clearly have no conscience and did not give a second thought to the impact on their victims."
Police identified them through CCTV inquiries and the use of automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) technology.