Published: 17:40, 31 March 2021
| Updated: 17:50, 31 March 2021
A burglar has been jailed for nearly two years for stealing a customised classic car that was a replica of one from the Harry Potter films.
The pale blue Ford Anglia – driven by the Weasleys in the movie versions of JK Rowling's best-selling novels – was stolen from a Walmer garage by Richard Matthews in October 2019.
The 37-year-old was caught after a media appeal using CCTV stills that led to his identification and arrest.
Shortly before midday on Thursday, October 17, Matthews arrived in Walmer on a train and walked to the garages in Station Drive, where he stole the car.
But he had been spotted by members of the public who came forward following a police appeal for information.
They reported seeing a man with a scruffy appearance acting suspiciously at the time of the burglary.
CCTV footage from the area had caught Matthews on camera and he was identified as the suspect.
He was arrested in November 2019 and charged with burglary.
Appearing at Canterbury Crown Court on Friday last week, Matthews, formerly of Ingoldsby Road, Folkestone, pleaded guilty.
He was sentenced to 22 months in prison.
Investigating officer PC Katie Clarke, from the Dover Victim Based Crime Team, said: "Like all burglars, Matthews showed little respect for other people’s property, taking what didn’t belong to him, for his own selfish reasons.
"Since his arrest, Matthews has not been willing to say where the car is, which is so disappointing for the victim, who put a lot of time into restoring and customising the vehicle.
"I would hope Matthews develops a sense of decency regarding the loss and considers the impact of his actions.
"I wish to thank everyone who came forward with information to help identify and bring this thief before the courts."