Steaming mad over cuppa crooks

UNAFRAID: Sally Taylor, loans officer for DFCU, says the break-in has not put her off drinking tea.
UNAFRAID: Sally Taylor, loans officer for DFCU, says the break-in has not put her off drinking tea.
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BURGLARS who broke into a charity shop tossed paperwork around, stole more than £100 – and helped themselves to two cups of tea while they were at it.

The mess at Dacorum First Credit Union (DFCU) in Marlowes, Hemel Hempstead, was discovered by staff when they turned up for work yesterday morning.

They also found two used cups used by the intruders as they stopped for a refreshment break.

DFCU president Ann Gorton said: “I suppose they thought ‘We might as well make the most of it’ – but they could have at least washed the cups afterwards.”

She believes the shop was hit by thieves who see charities as an “easy target”.

She said: “The people who did this are toe-rags and that is putting it mildly.”

A new charity shop called Rainbow Raisers opened in the same building as the DFCU only a day before the burglary – but its stock was left alone by the crooks.

The aim of the charity shop, which sells books and bric-a-brac, is to help the volunteer-led DFCU pay its rent on the building.

The crooks smashed a window at the back of the shop next to a private car park, then removed protective bars to get in.

It is thought the damage will cost about £150 to put right

The thieves only made off with petty cash, as the shop’s takings are banked when it closes each day.

Mrs Gorton said: “What did surprise us is they did not take any of our computers.

“They were after money and got what they wanted – but not much of it. We were lucky that there was not any major amount of cash left here for them to take. The break-in was not really worth their while.”

Scenes of crimes experts were at the scene yesterday taking fingerprints in the hope of catching the crooks. Anyone with information on the crime should phone police on 101, quoting crime reference number D1/12/76.