The MP for Chislehurst has expressed his concerns about the recent spike in burglaries in his ward.

MP Bob Neill told News Shopper: “It is obviously a very serious issue. It seems there have been a spate of very professional jobs done.

“In a briefing I had with police it seems organised gangs are targeting Chislehurst with South American gangs being flown in.”

He also said traveller gangs were believed to be targeting homes in the wealthy area of Bromley.

Statistics from the Met Crime Data Dashboard showed a spike in residential burglaries reported to police in Chislehurst in 2017.

Below are the statistics from the past five years of residential burglaries in Chislehurst:

2012 - 102

2013 - 129

2014 - 96

2015 - 74

2016 - 68

2017 - 130

2018 (January until March) – 48

Mr Neill said the figures were a concern and believes police resources in outer London are stretched and "poorly balanced" compared to more central boroughs.

He said: “We ought to regard domestic burglaries as violent crimes. It is almost as bad as assaulting someone.

“I remember my mother being quite traumatised years back when she was burgled.

“I think resources are a problem, burglary should be a higher priority and there should be court recognition for how serious this is for people on the receiving end.”

Between January and February of this year – Bromley had more reported home burglaries than any other borough in south east London.

Mr Neill has applied for a debate in the House of Commons on the police and court’s approach to domestic burglaries.

He is expected to have an answer to the proposal next week.