A spate of sneak-in thefts at plush properties in East Kilbride and Strathaven has led to an increase in police patrols in the lead up to Christmas.
Over the last month many homes across the town have been targeted by opportunist criminals who are taking advantage of lax security.
A Gardenhall home was targeted by car thieves on the look-out for keys to expensive motor cars with the culprits escaping with £50,000 worth of property.
Thieves made off with a £30,000 white and blue Mercedes E-Class Saloon and a £10,000 white Ford Transit, various electrical items, mobile phones, and personal items including wedding and engagement rings from a house in Eden Grove between 11.30pm on December 4 and 6.30am on December 5.
Opportunist car thieves helped themselves to a blue Volvo V60 worth £25,000, and laptops, passports and personal possessions after entering through an unlocked front door at a house in Lymekilns Road in Stewartfield while the owners were asleep.The incident happened at around 5.40am on December 8.
A house in Durward, Calderwood, was targeted between 7 and 9pm on December 10.
The front door was forced open and electrical items and jewellery worth £1800 were taken. A distinctive blue-handled camping knife with a Centre West logo was also stolen from the property.
A flat-screen TV, £700 worth of jewellery and £100 cash was robbed from a house on Baillie Drive, Calderwood, between 3.30 and 10.30pm on December 3.
In Hairmyres between midnight on December 9 and 7am on December 10, crooks forced open a kitchen window at a house in Strathyre Gardens and made off with cash.
An attempted break-in at a house in Seamill Gardens, Kittochfield, on December 5 was foiled when the crooks were caught in the act by the owner’s son.
He awoke at 6am after hearing them try the lock of the rear door. After challenging them, the brazen thieves shouted abuse at him, then walked off.
A rural bungalow in Strathaven was also targeted between November 29 and December 4. £2000 worth of lead was taken from the West Windy Edge property.
Police are appealing for witnesses who may have seen people acting suspiciously in the area.
High visibility and plain clothed patrols have been put in place in order to trace these criminals.
PC Matt McCabe said: “Never leave doors or windows unlocked and take as much care of your car keys as you would your vehicle. Keep them secure and out of sight.”
Contact EK police on 564000.