Youth gang member jailed

A 17-YEAR-OLD who is part of a gang of youths believed to be terrorising a Suffolk town has been jailed for eight months following a string of offences.

The teenager, who cannot be named because of his age, was given a detention and training order for a number of incidents.

He was sentenced last week for two robberies in Leiston - one in March this year where a 15-year-old boy had his iPod stolen and another in April where a 13-year-old boy had his mobile phone taken.

It also included two assaults - one where a 22-year-old man was punched in Leiston in April and another where a 20-year-old man suffered facial injuries in an incident in Saxmundham in May.

A 15-year-old boy, who was charged with the second robbery, two other robbery incidents and a common assault, was sentenced to a youth rehabilitation order, which includes a supervision requirement, curfew, location ban and restrictions including a ban on associating with a number of named individuals for 12 months.

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Further members of the group are due to appear at court over the next few weeks and officers in Leiston have pledged to continue to target these individuals until their criminal behaviour ceases.

In the meantime patrols have been stepped up and work will continue with other agencies in a bid to disrupt the groups’ anti-social activities.

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Additional officers have been drafted in with police regularly stopping and engaging with the group and, where possible and appropriate, taking enforcement action in order to address any disorderly behaviour.

Much of the ongoing investigation by Leiston CID officers currently centres around burglary offences in the town after police recovered stolen property at several addresses linked to the group.

Property stolen from Leiston Middle School was recovered after police executed a warrant at premises in Crown Street on Friday, July 16 and items from house burglaries were found during previous searches.

Several individual members of the group are on bail as these are investigated, with a view to burglary or handling stolen goods charges.

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