A duo labelled two of the “most wanted” men in the West Midlands have been jailed for conspiracy to commit almost 70 burglaries.

Dobroslav Gabor and Marek Balog committed 68 burglaries in just four months from July 23 to November 27, 2020, targeting the elderly and vulnerable across Sandwell, Walsall and Birmingham.

West Midlands Police said the pair walked into people’s homes and were known to climb onto roofs to get in through open windows.

They also posed as workmen and offered services such as cleaning driveways to gain access and steal money, bank cards, electrical items and sentimental jewellery.

DC Suzie Doidge, who led the investigation, said: “Gabor and Balog targeted people in their homes at a time when the country was under huge lockdown restrictions meaning their homes were their safe haven.

“But these men broke in and took that from them. They stole their prized possessions, sentimental items and made people really fearful to sleep in their own beds.”

The pair continued to commit burglaries whilst on bail and were also charged with aggravated burglary on a vulnerable 81-year-old man.

The duo walked into the home of the man, who had left his front door open for carers, and when he questioned them for being in his home, they hit him to the ground and threatened him with a knife.

They stole money from his pockets and prized his wedding ring from his finger which he had been wearing for almost 60 years. After his health deteriorated, the man recently died.

At Birmingham Crown Court on May 5, 2022, Gabor pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary and conspiracy to commit 67 burglaries. He was jailed for 16 years.

Yesterday (Tuesday, October 17), Balog pleaded guilty to the same offences and was jailed for 14 years and 10 months.

The son of the 81-year-old man who was burgled said: “I am glad some proper justice has been had. It is a shame that my dad isn’t around to hear this as he would have been really happy with this.”

DC Suzie Doidge added: “This was such a complex job, with so many offences and different strands, I am so pleased to finally see these two men being jailed for their crimes.

“When your home is broken into, it leaves such a devastating lasting effect on people. I want to thank all of our victims and the wider public for their co-operation and I hope that this outcome provides some comfort to the families I have worked so closely with over the last few years.”