Two men have been convicted over a break-in where a woman was tied up and tens of thousands of pounds worth of cash and jewellery were stolen in East Hanningfield.

One of the men, Darren Girling, failed to appear at court and police are now looking for him.

The incident took place when Jamie Langley and another man broke into an address in Creephedge Lane in at around shortly before 4am on May 16, 2017.

The victim, a woman in her 70s, had been sleeping in bed when one of them climbed on top of her, grabbed her and demanded she show them where her safe is.

The victim was assaulted before showing Langley where the safe was. They then took money and jewellery as well as an air pistol, which was in a gun safe.

Demands were made of the victim to show them where her bag was before they tied her up and threatened her again. In the end jewellery, cash and property worth a six-figure sum were taken.

Witnesses reported seeing two men getting into a blue silver Ford Focus in the Augustine Way area of Bicknacre at around 5.45am and property belonging to the victim was found there later in the day.

The car was found to be registered to 66 year-old Alan Girling and when officers asked him, he confirmed he was the owner and sole user.

Darren Girling and Langley were stopped while driving a silver BMW compact along the A1245 between the Rettendon Turnpike and Rawreth at 8.15pm on May 19.

The vehicle was found to be using false number plates.

They were both arrested on suspicion of aggravated burglary.

Langley was later identified in a line-up as one of the men seen in the Augustine Way area of Bicknacre.

Forensic evidence linked Langley to a red and black handle screwdriver which was recovered from Augustine Way.

Alan Girling was then interviewed on May 22.

Darren Girling, 42, of East Crescent, Canvey Island was later charged with burglary with violence, while Langley, 29, of London Road, Westcliff was charged with burglary.

Alan Girling, of Seaview Parade, St Osyth, was charged with perverting the course of justice.

While the Girlings denied the charges against them, Langley pleaded guilty at a hearing at Chelmsford Crown Court in June 2018.

However, following a trial at Chelmsford Crown Court, Darren and Alan Girling were found guilty on Wednesday, May 8.

At the same trial another man, Sonny Lawson, 23, of Furtherwick Road, Canvey Island, was found not guilty of aggravated burglary.

Detective Inspector Steve Nelson, from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: “This was a really frightening incident for the victim which left her with a head injury and needing hospital treatment.

“No-one should feel unsafe in their own home but Darren Girling and Jamie Langley carried out a terrifying burglary and stole many items which had a high monetary and sentimental value.

“Alan Girling helped them with their dreadful crime by taking them away from the scene and helping them evade arrest.

“All three men have shown they have no moral compass and I am glad they have been convicted.

“I want to praise the courage of the victim and I hope these verdicts provide some solace”.

Darren Girling failed to appear at court and we now need to find him.

He is described as white, 5ft 11ins tall, of stocky build with a tattoo of a lightning bolt on either side of his neck and tattoos of Chinese writing on his left wrist and on his upper arm.

He has links to Basildon, Southend and Canvey Island and sometimes also goes by the name Darren Gladwell.

If you’ve seen him or have any information about where he is please call us on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.