A gang of car thieves who stole high-performance motors were caught after a worried neighbour took a photo of them acting suspiciously.

The crooks were pictured around a £27,500 Mercedes in Erdington, Birmingham, after a passerby thought they looked shifty.

Brothers Alimaan and Adnan Hussain and 'gang leader' Sikander Farooq from Stechford handled the stolen cars, pinched from addresses across the West Midlands between 2015 and 2017.

A court heard how the Mercedes that became their undoing was stolen from a driveway in Cannock, Staffordshire, before being later spotted in Erdington, in what appeared to be an exchange involving four men, the Birmingham Mail reports.

Officers identified the men as Farooq, the Hussain brothers, Nathan Somers and Gavin Hladkiy.

Their homes were raided and Alimaan Hussain was arrested.

The leader of the gang, Sikander Farooq, 36, was found guilty of conspiracy to commit burglaries, conspiracy to handle stolen goods and handling a stolen Volkswagen Golf R
Alimaan Hussain, 27, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglaries and was given a two year sentence, suspended for two years

Items including a steering wheel and car keys from BMWs and Audis were found in a blue BMW M3 and a blue Nissan GTR parked on the driveway.

The court was told Aqeel Hussain, Dillon McCann, Gavin Hladkiy, Hareece Ali and Nathan Somers were believed to have carried out the burglaries where vehicle keys were targeted and stolen.

Alimaan Hussain, Adnan Hussain and Farooq are then believed to have received the vehicles and disposed of them.

The leader of the gang, Farooq, 36, was found guilty of conspiracy to commit burglaries, conspiracy to handle stolen goods and handling a stolen Volkswagen Golf R.

Aqeel Hussain, 23, pleaded guilty to a burglary and an attempted burglary and was sentenced to two years three months
Adnan Hussain, 28, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglaries and was sentenced to three years and nine months
 

He was sentenced to five years for conspiracy to burgle and was also given concurrent sentences of five years for handling stolen goods and two years for handling stolen property.

Adnan Hussain, 28, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglaries and was sentenced to three years and nine months.

Alimaan Hussain, 27, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglaries and was given a two year sentence, suspended for two years, 200 hours’ unpaid work and a rehabilitation order.

Aqeel Hussain, 23, pleaded guilty to a burglary and an attempted burglary and was sentenced to two years three months.

Gavin Hladkiy, aged 36, pleaded guilty to handling a stolen Mercedes and was sentenced to two years three months
Nathan Somers, aged 25, pleaded guilty to a burglary and was sentenced to three years for burglary with two years concurrent for handling an Audi A7

Read More

Top news stories from Mirror Online

Nathan Somers, aged 25, pleaded guilty to a burglary and was sentenced to three years for burglary with two years concurrent for handling an Audi A7.

Gavin Hladkiy, aged 36, pleaded guilty to handling a stolen Mercedes and was sentenced to two years three months.

Two other men, Hareece Ali, aged 22, and Dillon McCann, aged 20, pleaded guilty to a burglary and were sentenced at the time.

Detective Sergeant James Byrne, of Staffordshire Police, said: “This was a well-organised operation where this group of men were targeting high-end, performance cars across the Midlands.

“Our detectives have worked hard and shown great tenacity to piece together these men’s activities since the investigation began in April 2017 through to these convictions and pleas and today's sentencings at crown court.”