Five men have been charged following an investigation into a string of high-value thefts.

Police said the suspects were arrested in connection with gold jewellery and cash being stolen from homes at a number of locations across East Renfrewshire and Greater Glasgow.

Between January 3 and 14, police received reports of 17 housebreakings in these areas, including Newton Mearns.

Yesterday, officers executed a warrant at a property in West Kilbride and five suspects, aged 22, 23, 26, 27 and 28, were arrested and charged.

They are due to appear at Glasgow Sheriff Court tomorrow.

Police have been cracking down on high-value housebreakings as part of Operation Virion and have warned those involved in such crimes that they will have no hiding place.

Detective Inspector Gary Cassidy said: “Whenever someone’s home is broken into, the impact on the householder, their families and the local community is significant.

“High-value thefts by housebreaking of domestic properties for family valuables such as jewellery and cash is not a new phenomenon. Those who commit such crimes are not bound by geographical boundaries and, as such, Operation Virion was set up as a co-ordinated national approach to address these types of incidents.

“The dedicated team of officers deployed to Operation Virion help ensure that Police Scotland is in a position to respond effectively to investigate any incidents which do occur anywhere in the country to bring those responsible to justice, as well as working with partner agencies to prevent and minimise the risk to people in our communities.

“We are determined to disrupt the activity of individuals and groups involved in these types of incidents and will do everything in our power to bring those involved to justice.”

Anyone who has information about thefts can contact officers via 101 or, alternatively, make an anonymous report to the Crimestoppers charity by calling 0800 555 111.