Trio rattled after snake theft arrest

By Observer Reporter Thursday 07 February 2013 Updated: 07/02 17:08

POLICE have dealt with some slippery customers in their time - but officers were shocked to find a ten-foot long python in the foot-well of a van pulled over in Coventry.

Cops stopped the transit after a tip off from a pet shop owner who reported three men offering the snake for sale.

They arrested three men on suspicion of breaking into an outhouse at a Hillfields address last month.

A pair of royal pythons, corn snakes, boa constrictors and albino boas were all stolen - but the African Rock Python is the only one found so far.

Investigating officer, PC Scott Gould, said the theft, reported on Saturday, January 26, had seen offenders rip plywood away from an outhouse before taking the snakes.

“All regional pet shops were urged to look out for them and later that day we received a call from one saying someone had tried selling them an African Rock Python.

"It’s believed to be one of the nine that were stolen but, despite extensive searches at the homes of the three men arrested, the others remain unaccounted for.

“If anyone has any information about the theft, has seen the snakes or been offered one for sale, I’d urge them to contact us on the 101 police number.”

The snakes are described as:

Boa constrictors – one beige with a red tail, the other beige and dark grey

Albino boas – both yellow-cream in colour

Royal pythons – both dark brown and gold

Corn snakes – both white in colour

Three men aged 29, 28 and 24 – all from the Willenhall area of Coventry – were arrested and bailed until a date later in February pending further enquiries.

Anyone with information is asked to call Coventry Police on the 101 number or alternatively phone the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

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