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Last Updated: Thursday, 18 October 2007, 16:02 GMT 17:02 UK
Ministry replaces stolen medals
Derek Twigg MP and Harry Francis
The medals were presented to Mr Francis at the Ministry of Defence
Five medals stolen from a World War II sailor were replaced by Veterans' Minister Derek Twigg at a presentation in London on Thursday.

Mr Twigg presented Harry Francis, 82, with replacements for his 1939-45 War Medal, 1939-45 Defence Medal, 1939-45 Star, Burma Star and Italy Star.

Mr Twigg said: "I hope this will go some way to make up for the loss of his originals."

Mr Francis of Bristol joined the Royal Navy as a 16-year-old in 1942.

He served in the Special Boat Service attached to 40 Commando of the Royal Marines during the war.

The medals were stolen from Mr Francis last year by Edward Portlock, 73, of Dickens Close, Gloucester,.

Portlock stole 2,228 from British Legion members who had paid for a battlefield tour in France as well as Mr Francis's medals which had been given to him to be re-ribboned.

Mr Francis said: "It is a real honour for me to come to the Ministry of Defence to receive these medals. I have many happy memories of my time in the Royal Marines.

"My family and I are immensely proud."


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