Communities including Whittington, near Lichfield, have been hit in recent weeks by crooks stealing high-powered cars.

Police say thieves take the vehicles to use as getaway cars in crimes elsewhere.

Now a case in Stafford Crown Court has thrown light on the sort of villainy these people are involved in.

Ruthless crooks

Three vicious brothers and their accomplice were today convicted of a series of offences across the West Midlands.

First they stole Mercedes, VWs and Audis from homes in Staffordshire and elsewhere.

Brothers Gavin (33), Thomas (23) and Lee Cotterill (29), and Adam Cheshire (21), struck security guards at a Barclays Bank, in Burntwood, and made off with £15,000.

The criminal quartet, all from Wolverhampton, also targeted shops, garages and cash transit vehicles.

All guilty

Gavin Cotterill and Cheshire were found guilty of conspiracy to commit robbery and conspiracy to burgle homes and commercial premises.

Thomas and Lee Cotterill pleaded guilty to the same offences at an earlier hearing.

They will all be sentenced next month.

But the court action has not stopped others bent on committing the same kind of crimes.

Last month criminals smashed through reinforced double-glazed patio doors at a property in Chapel Lane, Whittington, in search of the keys to a BMW.


They parked a large white van on the street outside to make it seem they were workmen visiting the house.

None of the people who saw the van became suspicious.

No one raised the alarm at the sound of crashing glass as they broke in.

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