BURGLARS on the hunt for gold have targeted 13 Asian homes over the past two weeks, it has been claimed.
Mohindra Dhall, a former president of the Scottish Indian Arts Forum, lost more than £1000 worth of jewellery after thieves ransacked his East Craigs home last Tuesday.
He is the fourth victim of such an attack within his circle of friends in the Corstorphine and Silverknowes areas, and said he has now been told of many more.
Such is the concern within the city’s Indian community the 71-year-old businessman has announced he will lead a delegation to meet with Chief Constable David Strang on the matter.
Police have stated that while not believing “any one specific group of people or ethnic minority are being targeted” they were “keeping an open mind” about whether the robberies were linked.
But Mr Dhall said thieves appeared to be targeting Indian families.
“These thieves are systematically targeting Indian and Asian homes in their hunt for gold,” he said. “There have been a spate of burglaries in Mid Lothian and West Lothian in the last four weeks.
“Many of those who have been robbed are young couples who have recently been married. These thieves therefore know that there will be a lot of jewellery in the house at the time.
“I was told by a senior inspector that 13 cases have been reported in the last two weeks and all the victims are Asians.”
He added: “My wife and I and two friends who were visiting from Ghana returned home at 6.30pm to find we had been burgled. My friend’s iPad and several items of jewellery were taken.”
Another member of the city’s Indian community has also come forward to tell how her Carrick Knowe home was ransacked.
She said: “All of my family’s gold and jewellery was taken. It’s not the value of the items but the fact these are family heirlooms passed down through generations. They are irreplaceable.
“I don’t know what’s happening but two more friends of mine, one from Carrick Knowe and one from Craigmount, were also robbed.”
Police have stated that that high visibility patrols will now be carried out in the areas.
A Lothian and Borders spokesperson said: “Lothian and Borders Police is aware of a rise of break-ins to homes in the Drumbrae and Silverknowes areas of Edinburgh since early October.
“At this stage we do not believe that the crimes are linked and we do not believe that a specific group of people or ethnic minority are being targeted, however we are keeping an open mind.
“A dedicated team of officers are currently investigating these break-ins and are pursuing a number of lines of inquiry.
“Uniformed officers are also carrying out high-visibility patrols to reassure local residents and distribute letters which give vital crime prevention to homes in the area.”