LANDLORD Neal Smith has every right to be angry.

Neal has run the King’s Arms in Frating for 20 years and he has made a successful business of it.

It is a popular pub which has survived and thrived where many others have closed.

And that is due in no small part to the hard work Neal and his team have put into it.

So how galling it must be to have people breaking in to ransack his flat, his home, to take what they want.

To add insult to injury, this is the third break-in at the pub within a year.

Neal has installed CCTV to try to deter the criminals but still they have struck.

So who is to blame? The police for not catching the crooks?

Essex County Council for turning off the street lights between 1am and 5am giving burglars the cloak of darkness?

These may be contributory factors but the blame lies firmly on the shoulders of the criminals who would rather steal from others than earn their own money,

It is their choice to take someone else’s property and, as such, it is their responsibility.

There is no excuse for stealing and huge sympathies must go to Neal and his family for going through this terrible experience three times.

Your home should be your sanctuary, that special place where you can feel safe.

The thieves have stolen not only money but also peace of mind.

We can only hope they are brought to justice and the courts deal with them robustly.