‘Rolex rippers’ target golf club members in the South

Two highly professional female thieves have been repeatedly stealing expensive watches from men in golf club car parks in Hampshire and Dorset over the last year, according to the police.

The duo, said to have either Eastern European or Spanish accents, particularly target lone men in their 70s outside golf clubs and have done this at least 14 times since July 2020.

A member of Ferndown Golf Club had a £2,000 Rolex stolen as he was getting into his car in the club car park

They typically pose as charity workers with clipboards and steal the watches as their victims sign a petition. They have also attacked the men, ripping the watches off their wrists, and even followed them into cars until they got the watches or jewellery, before escaping via a waiting car.

It is thought the pair have struck seven times in Poole, Wimborne, Wareham, Ferndown, Highcliffe and Poundbury in Dorset in the past two months. One theft occurred in the car park of Ferndown Golf Club while another happened next to a golf club in Poole.

In Hampshire, two robberies took place in golf club car parks. In July 2020, Hampshire Police issued e-fit descriptions of two women who mugged a 78-year-old man of his Rolex watch in Emsworth. At the time police said there had been four similar thefts of Rolex watches.

The recent spate of robberies appears to have begun on May 19 at Stoneham Golf Club, near Southampton, followed by an identical incident a week later at Wellow Golf Club, near Romsey, Hants. Both times the pair got their victims to sign a petition before covertly stealing their Rolexes. Then on July 14 they turned up at Ferndown Golf Club where one of them approached a man aged in his 70s in the car park, grabbed his arm and took the watch from his wrist. She got into a waiting vehicle, believed to be a black Ford Focus, and made off from the scene.

Both women are said to be aged in their 20s or 30s and between 5ft 2ins and 5ft 9ins tall. They both have dark hair and Eastern European accents although some victims have believed them to be Spanish.

Dorset Police have acknowledged ‘a number of incidents of a similar nature’. Police Constable Jim Perks, of Christchurch Police, said: “We have had a number of incidents of a similar nature and I would again remind people to be vigilant if you are wearing any high value watches or jewellery and are approached in suspicious circumstances.”

If you have any information about the thefts, please call Dorset Police’s Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111 or Christchurch police station on 01202 222222.