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Orpington’s Laura Johnson found guilty of riot looting

PUBLISHED: 15:18 05 April 2012

Laura Johnson l

Laura Johnson l

PA Wire/Press Association Images

An Orpington student is facing jail after being found guilty of looting during last summer’s riots.

Laura Johnson, 20, was convicted of burglary and handling stolen goods at the Inner London Crown Court today.

The Exeter University student, of Sheepcote Lane, chauffered a group around south-east London so they could ransack shops on August 8.

Her passengers leapt from her car clad in hooded tops, bandanas and balaclavas before filling it with stolen goods.

When police stopped her car in the Greenwhich Peninsula Retail Park, they found it loaded with the looted items.

Johnson was arrested at the scene with a 17-year-old boy from Catford and an 18-year-old man from Lee. A fourth suspect in the car fled and has not been found.

She denied three charges of burglary and three alternative charges of handling stolen goods.

A jury found her guilty of burglary at Comet on Greenwich Peninsula, handling stolen goods from Currys in Stone Lake Retail Park, but acquitted her of burglary at a BP garage in Charlton.

Speaking after the trial, Detective Sergeant Mark Gilchrist said he was pleased with the result.

He added: “Laura Johnson went out on the evening of the 8th of August with the intention of stealing from local stores and join in the mass disorder and looting.

“We continue to investigate and pursue those involved in the August disorder and are still trawling through a large volume of CCTV footage.”

Johnson will appear for sentencing on Thursday May 3.

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