Thieves take Arsenal star’s car on a joyride after burglary at Hampstead Garden Suburb home
- Credit: PA WIRE
The home of Arsenal football star David Ospina has been raided by audacious thieves who broke in undetected, stole his car keys and took his luxury car on a joyride across north London.
The nighttime raid – which took place while people were asleep in the house – is the latest in a spate of luxury car thefts to hit the area.
The burglary looked to be perfectly timed for when the goalkeeper was abroad while on international duty for his home country of Colombia.
A spokesman for the Gunners star said nobody was hurt and police say the stolen car, thought to be a Mercedes, was eventually tracked and found dumped in Wembley Park.
Ospina’s home, the former residence of fellow Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny – who is currently on loan to Italian football club Roma – is in an exclusive street in Hampstead Garden Suburb.
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The area, home to a number of Premier League stars, has been reportedly hit by a number of car thefts recently.
Last month, the Ham&High reported Hampstead Garden Suburb resident David Conway found his Range Rover stolen outside his drive.
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Police had told him about 30 Range Rovers had been stolen that week alone.
Unlike the theft from Ospina’s house, which was on the night of October 9, the criminals didn’t need to break into the car or Mr Conway’s house.
Instead, CCTV showed a thief managing to unlock the vehicle electronically and make a getaway in less than 30 seconds.
Last Tuesday, Hampstead Garden Suburb Residents’ Association met with local police officers and a private security firm to discuss what has been perceived as a rise in crime in the area.
The meeting, at Fellowship House in Willifield Way, saw officers raise the issue of “car hacking” in which criminals use devices to bypass electronic locking systems.
They suggested residents invest in old fashioned car wheel locks, describing them as “brilliant” in deterring thieves.
The residents’ association also suggested households could get involved in more neighbourhood watch schemes, of which there are already about 20 in the Suburb, to help deter burglars and muggers.
Households are also turning to private security contractors like LCS Security, who employ former Ghurkas to patrol the streets, to keep them safe.
Figures show car thefts in London rose by 8 per cent last year to a total of 21,869, with luxury cars a particular target.
Police say they are still hunting the criminal or criminals responsible for taking Ospina’s car, having made no arrests.
A spokesman added: “The offence took place between 11pm on Friday October 9 and 8am on Saturday October 10.”