Two professional burglars have been jailed for posing as golfers and stealing more than £750,000 worth of equipment from 35 golf clubs across the country, including Chapel-en-le-Frith.
Daniel Lloyd, 43, of Westerham Road, Keston, London, and Joe McCaughey, 26, of King Henry’s Drive, New Addington, Croydon, were found guilty of conspiracy to burgle following a three-week trial at Birmingham Crown Court. They received five and three years respectively.
They were responsible for at least 36 separate burglaries in 17 counties, including Chapel-en-le-Frith Golf Club, The Cockyard, on Manchester Road, on the night of May 18, 2009.
Around £4,000 worth of golf paraphernalia including clubs, bags, clothing, gloves and umbrellas
When officers searched Lloyd’s home they found evidence on his computer of internet searches for golf club thefts, locker security and lock picking. Further investigation revealed that Lloyd and McCaughey were in fact the subjects of a wanted appeal by police which featured on BBC’s Crimewatch in 2010.
Steve Baldwin, the National Crime Agency’s head of regional investigations, said: “These men were professional burglars who tried to mask their identities by avoiding CCTV cameras, changing their clothes to enter the same clubs over and over again, and using false number plates on their vehicles. When we discovered they were the wanted men from the appeal, we worked with police forces and golf clubs across the country to gather evidence. We proved they had stolen equipment from hundreds of golfers, which they disposed of here and overseas. Our focus is now the financial side of the investigation and stripping them of their assets.”
Police believe Lloyd and McCaughey were responsible for more than 36 burglaries and could have raided up to a 1,000 lockers and stolen equipment worth over £750,000.
The duo moved around clubhouses in golf attire, gaining access to the changing rooms, which they sometimes did by duping members of staff, and stole full sets of golf clubs, shoes, clothing and even cherry-picked the more expensive clubs. The main vehicle they used was a Chrysler Grand Voyager which was registered to Lloyd.
Lloyd and McCaughey also raided golf clubs in Lancashire, Devon, Somerset, Nottinghamshire, North Yorkshire, Cheshire, Wiltshire, South Yorkshire, Greater Manchester, Northumbria, Cleveland, Durham, Cumbria, Merseyside, Kent and Suffolk.