Police investigating a violent burglary at Mark Cavendish’s home in November 2021 have charged two more men in connection with the break-in, during which the former world champion was attacked in front of his wife and children.
In the early hours of 27 November four masked men broke into Cavendish’s home in Ongar, Essex, just days after the sprinter had returned there after being discharged from hospital in Belgium following a serious crash at the Ghent Six Day, in which he sustained broken ribs and a punctured lung.
Cavendish said he was “violently attacked” during the burglary, with the robbers escaping with two ultra-expensive Richard Mille watches and a Louis Vuitton suitcase. According to the Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl rider, the armed gang also threatened his wife and children before ransacking the house.
30-year-old Romario Henry, of Lewisham, was charged with two counts of robbery in December. He appeared at Colchester Magistrates’ Court on 20 December, where he spoke only to confirm his name and address. He is due to make his next court appearance tomorrow.
Two other men were taken into custody at the time of Henry’s arrest, before being released on bail.
Yesterday Essex Police announced that these two men, 27-year-olds Oludewa Okorosobo, of Camberwell, and Ali Badara Sesay, who lives in Rainham, have been charged with robbery. They will appear at Chelmsford Crown Court on 29 March.
Officers investigating the robbery also confirmed yesterday that they are still looking to locate and speak to George Goddard (pictured below left) and Jo Jobson (right), whose photographs were released by the police in January, in connection with the incident.
Jobson, 25, is from Plaistow, east London, while 26-year-old Goddard is from Loughton, Essex, but is said to have connections to the Isle of Dogs.
Detective Inspector Tony Atkin said yesterday: “We're still seeking the public’s help to locate these two men, Jo Jobson and George Goddard. I believe both men will have information which will help the investigation and I would urge them both to come forward.”
Anyone with information as to the whereabouts of either man is requested to call Essex Police immediately on 101, and to cite Operation Chamber when asked.
Cavendish revealed details of the attack in a social media post in early December, writing: “In the early hours of 27th November, while recovering at our Essex family home shortly after leaving Intensive Care, 4 masked and armed men threatened my wife and children and violently attacked me. At knifepoint, they proceeded to ransack our belongings.
“Amongst what was taken, were 2 watches of great sentiment and value. But far, far worse to be taken was the sense of security, safety, privacy and dignity that my young family and everybody else is entitled to in their own home.”
The two-time Tour de France green jersey winner added: “The effect that this nightmare has had on my family is already heart-breakingly evident, so I beg anybody who may be able to help us with information to call 101, quoting reference 42/275184/21.”
DI Atkin said in a statement at the time: “This was undoubtedly a targeted incident at the home of a celebrated British Olympian, who at the time was recovering from significant injuries resulting from a crash whilst competing, which was well publicised. Our investigation is moving along at pace and we are following a number of lines of inquiry as we seek to catch those responsible.
“Mr Cavendish and his wife were assaulted and threatened in their own home, in the presence of their young children, who witnessed these events. Thankfully, they are recovering, but the traumatic effect will be long standing.
“It is likely the people who stole these items are attempting to offload them for sizeable sums of money and I would urge anyone who is being offered these items to please get in touch with us – they are stolen property.”
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Ryan joined road.cc as a news writer in December 2021. He has written about cycling and some ball-centric sports for various websites, newspapers, magazines and radio. Before returning to writing about cycling full-time, he completed a PhD in History and published a book and numerous academic articles on religion and politics in Victorian Britain and Ireland (though he remained committed to boring his university colleagues and students with endless cycling trivia). He can be found riding his bike very slowly through the Dromara Hills of Co. Down.