Teenagers arrested after distraction burglaries in Hemel Hempstead and Watford

File photo dated 22/10/14 of a Police officer, as according to new figures, some of the UK's biggest police forces have recorded a rise in the number of violent homophobic crimes this year, with hundreds of assaults on gay and lesbian people reported to police so far in 2014 - including more than 300 in London alone. Scotland Yard recorded 1,073 violent homophobic offences between January and October, up from 1,007 in 2013 and 1,002 in 2012. NNL-190724-153730005
File photo dated 22/10/14 of a Police officer, as according to new figures, some of the UK's biggest police forces have recorded a rise in the number of violent homophobic crimes this year, with hundreds of assaults on gay and lesbian people reported to police so far in 2014 - including more than 300 in London alone. Scotland Yard recorded 1,073 violent homophobic offences between January and October, up from 1,007 in 2013 and 1,002 in 2012. NNL-190724-153730005

A pair of teenage boys have been arrested following two distraction burglaries in Hemel Hempstead and Watford.

The 17-year-olds, one from Luton and the other from Aylesbury, were arrested on suspicion of burglary on Tuesday (July 23).

The first offence occurred in Coleridge Crescent, Hemel Hempstead, and the second offence happened in Coates Way, Watford.

Both boys have been released on conditional bail, which states they cannot enter Hemel Hempstead or Watford unless prior agreement has been given by police.

They are due to appear before Hatfield Magistrates’ Court on August 18.

It was reported that on July 10 the Hemel Hempstead victim, aged in her 70s, was approached by three young men who knocked on her door to say her friend had arranged for them to cut her grass.

The victim agreed to pay a fee for the work and left the address to retrieve the cash from an ATM, leaving the back door unlocked so the men could have access to the toilet.

She returned to the property and paid the men before they left. However later that evening she discovered that items of jewellery and cash had been stolen.

She then called police who filed a report and began carrying out enquiries.

On July 23, the victim called police again stating that some of the men who had previously carried out gardening work for her were back outside her address but she didn’t want to let them in.

Officers attended immediately and detained two men. On searching a van found at the location, officers discovered a cheque inside.

They contacted the person who had signed it – a 91-year-old woman from Watford – and discovered that she had also been a victim of a distraction burglary in similar circumstances that same day.

She had been approached by a number of men who she had paid to carry out gardening work at her property. They had asked to use the toilet on a number of occasions and once they had left, the victim discovered that items had been disturbed in one of the upstairs bedrooms.