1:10pm Tuesday 4th December 2012
By Anna Roberts
Robbers in Halloween masks blindfolded, gagged and tied up a mother in her home as her three-year-old daughter slept upstairs.
The woman, aged in her 30s, was walking out of the upstairs bathroom at her home in Amberley Drive, Hove, at 5pm on Saturday (December 1) when three masked men ambushed her.
They dragged her downstairs and tied her to a chair with items they had found in the house.
She was blindfolded and gagged during the 30-minute ordeal while the men ransacked her home.
They took a large amount of cash, gold jewellery and computer equipment.
The raiders left the petrified mother tied up. She was only discovered when her friend called and entered the home later that evening.
The woman was shaken but not physically harmed during the attack.
She is being looked after by victim support officers at Sussex Police and is due to be interviewed again today (December 4).
Police are not ruling out a link to similar crimes nationwide, including in Crawley, where Asian families have been targeted recently in jewellery burglaries.
Detective Constable Chris Bishop, of Brighton and Hove CID, said: “This was clearly a horrible and distressing incident for the victim and fortunately, neither her, nor her young daughter were physically injured.
"We believe this was a targeted attack and that someone will know who is responsible for it.
“We are keeping an open mind as to whether it is linked to similar incidents elsewhere in the country.”
One of the suspects is described as 5ft 6in, and was wearing blue mechanic-style overalls with a hood, black gloves and a rubber Halloween mask with a tiger design on it.
He spoke with an English accent. The two other suspects spoke both English and Urdu with Pakistani accents.
The thieves stole a Toshiba laptop, a red Nintendo DS games system, a Digital Quran MDQ200 computer, a Prakitica Luxmedia digital camera and a lady’s gold Seiko 5 watch.
Anyone with any information about the incident should call Sussex Police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
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