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Nasty criminal’ who robbed OAP, 87, gets 26th conviction

PUBLISHED: 20:42 17 June 2009 | UPDATED: 14:27 05 October 2010

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THIS is the “nasty career criminal” woman who robs pensioners and the vulnerable in East London. Not any more—she’s behind bars tonight after her 26th conviction, the latest in a series of crimes spanning 20 years

By Mike Brooke

THIS is the “nasty career criminal” woman who robs pensioners and the vulnerable in East London.

Not any more—she’s behind bars tonight after her 26th conviction, the latest in a series of crimes spanning 20 years.

It was a member of the public who spotted Tracey Southgate robbing a woman of 87 on her doorstep that led to her latest collar.

JAILED

The 40-year-old was jailed for three years after a jury at Inner London Crown court took just 20 minutes this afternoon (Wednesday) to convict her of robbery.

Southgate followed the pensioner returning to her home at Calverton Road in East Ham.

She grabbed her, pushed her in the face and wrestled her bags from her as she went to open the front door.

But she was spotted by a group of mechanics who heard the pensioner scream in terror and ran to her aid as Southgate fled. One was able to show police where she was hiding.

PREYED ON ELDERLY

Southgate had 25 previous convictions since 1989 when she was 20, it later emerged. Her criminal history shows a tendency to prey on the elderly and vulnerable, the court heard.

Southgate, from Browning Road in Manor Park, just two miles from where she robbed the latest pensioner, was convicted by the jury in the face of what police said was overwhelming independent evidence.

Det Con Thomas Boow said after the trial: “This is a nasty career criminal who preys on elderly victims who are unable to protect themselves.

“The people of East London will be much safer now she is behind bars.”

The member of the public who tracked her was commended and publicly thanked by the judge with £500 from public funds.


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