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Malayalee family devastated as thieves raid home in East Ham before wedding

L-R: Jayan Pillai, Silpa Pillai, Preena Pillai and Jinu Pillai on Silpa's wedding day

LONDON Sept 9: A father who allegedly had £110,000 worth of items stolen from his home three days before his daughter’s wedding has spoken of his devastation to Newham Recorder.
Jayan Pillai, 52, of Chester Road, Forest Gate, says £20,000 cash and £70,000 worth of jewellery was taken after his safe was wrenched loose by burglars on August 24.
The machine tool setter worker also had an E-Class Mercedes Benz taken while his son Jinu, 27, had £2,500 cash reserved for the wedding DJ stolen.
His wife Preena, 50, has been left traumatised by the burglary and the pair now want to leave the borough.
Jayan said: “It is like I could not protect the people in my own home. I let them down, especially a couple of days before my daughter’s wedding.”
He added his daughter Silpa, 25, had wanted to cancel the wedding but he persuaded her to go ahead.
“She wasn’t 100 per cent happy, she even cried on the day before and after the ceremony,” he said.
“She blamed herself because she arranged the wedding and thinks that is why we got burgled.”
On the day of the theft, Preena had gone shopping at 10am.
CCTV obtained from a nearby neighbour’s house show allegedly show two men going in and out of the property approximately 30 minutes later.
When Preena returned at 12.45pm, she found the porch door and front door open.
“She thought my son came back early from work but then she saw bottles of water that were stacked up scattered around the hallway,” said Jayan.
Preena found Silpa’s room “turned upside down” and her wedding dress on the floor before finding the safe was gone.
It included Preena’s 22-carat gold bridal chain which is “like a wedding ring for South Indian women”.
The playground assistant sought help from a neighbour who called the police. At this point, she found the silver-blue Mercedes was also gone.
A police spokesman said detectives were investigating an allegation of burglary between 10.15am and 1.35pm.
He said: “Entry was gained to the premises by a rear window and a quantity of jewellery and cash stolen.
“CCTV has been reviewed and further CCTV enquiries are in hand. No arrests have been made and enquiries continue.”