A TRIO of burglars who demanded ‘the shooters’ in terrifying raids on people’s homes have been given long jail terms.

Nathan Ingram and Edward Checkley forced their way into a home in Station Road, Bampton and threatened the owner with a machete. 

They demanded guns – referring to them as ‘the shooters’ - in the first raid, at about 10.30pm on February 19.

They stole three shotguns and ammunition before leaving and were driven off by Gareth Curtis.

Just over a week later, on March 1, the trio forced entry into a family home in Radcot Road, Faringdon in broad daylight.

The next victims, a father and his young child, returned while their home was being burgled at about 11am and were threatened with a sawn-off shotgun – which was later found to be one of the guns stolen in Bampton.

Once again, ‘the shooters' were demanded – but the man had no firearms to give.

Instead the criminals started a fire in the victims' hallway. Both sustained burns, which needed hospital treatment.

The sawn-off shotgun was found later near a burnt out vehicle linked to the offenders.

Later, more guns and ammunition were found at a property in Dorset linked to Ingram.

Some of those were found to have been taken from the Bampton burglary.

Ingram and Checkley were both sentenced to eight and a half years' imprisonment and Curtis received a prison sentence of seven and a half years.

Ingram, aged 19, of no fixed abode, admitted two counts of aggravated burglary, a count of possessing a firearm, another of possessing an altered firearm without a certificate, one count of possessing a firearm without a certificate and possessing ammunition without a certificate.

Checkley, aged 37, of London Street, Faringdon, admitted two counts of aggravated burglary and one count of possessing a firearm.

And Curtis, aged 35, of Palmer Road, Faringdon, pleaded guilty to a count of burglary, a count of aggravated burglary and a count of possessing a firearm.

They were sentenced at Oxford Crown Court on September 22. 

Investigating officer Detective Constable Alice Walker said: "The offenders in this case carried out burglaries in which the occupants of the properties were threatened and, in one of the cases, injured.

"These would have been terrifying experiences for the victims and undoubtedly it would be very difficult for them to be able to move on with their lives.

"The defendants recognised the strength of evidence against them and have admitted their involvement in the offences.

"They have now received substantial custodial sentences and can reflect upon the misery they caused from their prison cells. I am pleased for the victims that justice has been served."