MONMOUTH residents are too scared to leave their own homes following a series of burglaries over the last year, the town’s MP has said.

Properties in the town’s Wyesham, Dixton, Overnmonnow and Osbaston areas have been targeted in a spree of break-ins which started in June 2014.

Senior officers at Gwent Police have told Monmouth MP David Davies that there could be two separate gangs involved.

One is targeting high value cars and the other- believed to be responsible for many of the attacks on houses in Osbaston- is trying to escape with cash and valuables.

Further burglaries in November sparked fresh concerns and prompted the launch of a community watch team, with local residents taking security into their own hands by patrolling the streets.

Mr Davies revealed he had spoken at length with Gwent Police’s new inspector for Monmouthshire North, Arwel Hicks, and urged people to remain vigilant.

“I have been through all of the measures which the police are taking to try and catch those responsible,” said Mr Davies, who lives in Osbaston with his family.

“I will leave it to the police to discuss what measures they want to make public, but there is certainly a lot going on.”

Mr Davies believes the gang are very well-organised, leave no DNA, and are rarely seen.

“It would appear the gang behind many of the thefts are targeting properties early in the evening when the owners are away,” he added.

Mr Davies, who was himself a victim of burglary in 2006 when thieves broke into his home and stole cash and passports while his wife, young children and visitors slept, is urging residents to be vigilant for any strangers on the roads or callers who might be trying to find out if a house is empty.

“I know just how devastating this is and fully understand why people are feeling vulnerable.”

“It is very concerning to hear that residents are now living in fear of leaving their own homes and, as a fellow neighbor, I am equally as worried.”

“The police have made this a top priority and any calls about suspicious activity in the Monmouth area will be treated as an absolute priority,” he said.

Gwent Police has been working to stamp out the problem. The force ran a high priority campaign, which included using CCTV surveillance, dedicated officers and carried out an operation on Hereford Road in December to tackle burglaries and travelling criminality.

Officers arrested three people in connection with the theft of high-value vehicles in Monmouthshire and Newport.

Gwent Police, assisted by South Wales Police, carried out five search warrants at houses and lock-up garages across Cardiff. This targeted action was in response to a number of burglaries across both counties. A number of cars and recovered car parts were seized and the original owners are being traced.