A FAMILY of Romanian refugees will be deported after stealing cash from elderly women after befriending them outside post offices.

Mother-of-two Marie Farcas, 20, would distract the women, while her husband Gabriel, 23, grabbed their cash.

Martha Hunnam, 77, lost £290 when the pair targeted her as she left a post office in Sunderland, last October.

The pair, with Gabriel's brother Manu, also took £145 from 78-year-old Doris Jackson after she collected her pension from a post office in Gateshead.

After pleading guilty to the thefts at Newcastle Crown Court, the family said they were anxious to return to their home country.

Gabriel and Marie were sentenced to 12 months imprisonment but, due to time already spent in custody, will be released in a month, when they will be deported.

Manu will be deported immediately after being ordered to pay £45 compensation to Mrs Jackson and £125 costs.