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Pensioner's restored Land Rover stolen in Crook
A RETIRED mechanic who spent a year renovating a classic car has expressed his anger after thieves stole his lovingly-restored vehicle.
David Micklethwait said the light blue Land Rover 90 was as good as new when it was taken from outside his home in Crook, County Durham, between midnight and 10am on Sunday, August 4.
The vehicle, which was built in 1989, had been completely overhauled by Mr Micklethwait after he bought it three years ago.
The 72-year-old has spent the last 12 months installing a new engine, gearbox, axles, steering system and other parts.
He estimated the vehicle, with the registration plate A517 BJR, is now worth about £4,500, but said it had probably been stolen to sell for parts.
The vehicle also contained about £1,000 worth of tools many of which had belonged to Mr Micklethwait for decades.
Notable items included a Snap On Torque Multiplier, hydraulic jacks and other socket sets and mechanic’s tools.
The theft is the latest in a series of thefts of Land Rovers across the region. Two were stolen in Crook a couple of weeks ago while similar vehicles have recently been taken in Teesdale and North Yorkshire.
Mr Micklethwait said he was extremely angry as he had planned to use the vehicle for the rest of his life.
He said: “As you get older you want something reliable, I know this was as good as new so would last me for the rest of my life.
“The parts will probably be stripped out and sold on Ebay or something.”
The pensioner was even more annoyed when he discovered his insurance will not cover the full cost of the vehicle, and his premium is set to rise next year as a result of the theft.
He said: “I simply won’t be able to afford the insurance.
“It’s not a fair system at all, and what’s even more frustrating is that even if the criminals are caught they won’t be punished, they will just a suspended sentence or something soft like that.”
PC Anthony Barker based at Bishop Auckland Police Station is appealing for any information to be reported to him on 101 or to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800-555-111.
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