RETAILERS IN HOT PURSUIT AS GRAB-AND-DASHERS TAKE GOODS WORTH £6K 

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Arrests made as store appeals for information about stolen items.

Plucky sisters Josie and Annette Vant gave chase when two men made off with more than £6,000 worth of air jackets from their family’s Kent store. 

Police have since charged two suspects with theft from Saddlesdane Equestrian Supplies in Faversham. 

At around midday last Tuesday (21 May), two men entered the store and began chatting to staff. 

One then pulled a number of air jackets from a display stand - and ran from the premises without paying for the goods. 

“Annette was at the computer and saw him dash out of the door, so she ran after him and so did I,” said Josie, who was also working in the business owned by their mother Janice Vant.

“They had a car waiting. We nearly caught up with them at the road junction. Usually, it’s so busy that you can’t just pull out. Unfortunately, on that day it wasn’t, and they got away.”

Josie and Annette were, however, able to give the police good descriptions and the car registration number, while the incident was captured on CCTV.

Ten air vests taken

In total, ten Helite Zip In 2 air vests were taken. Saddlesdane Equestrian Supplies is in touch its insurer, NFU Mutual. 

By 4pm that day, the suspects’ car had been located and police officers arrested three men.

“The police have been amazing,” said Josie. “They were here within two hours and have been really thorough taking fingerprints and statements.”

Charges brought

Leon Holder (34) of Fairview, Hawkhurst, was later charged with three counts of theft, criminal damage, and possession of cannabis.

Anthony Wood (39) of The Ridge West, East Sussex, was also charged with theft.

Both men appeared before Sevenoaks’ Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, 23 May.

Mr Holder has been remanded in custody, while Mr Wood has been bailed. Both are due to appear before Folkestone Magistrates’ Court on 7 June.

A third man in his 40s, from Cranbrook, was also arrested on suspicion of theft. He has been given a conditional caution.

Information appeal

Saddlesdane Equestrian Supplies (tel 01233 740270) says they would be grateful for any information leading to the recovery of the ten air vests which have individual serial numbers. 

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