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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 January, 2004, 15:34 GMT
Venomous snakes stolen from house
Geckos are from sub-tropical regions and need specialist care
Four venomous snakes are among 18 which have been stolen from a house in south-east London.

Eight Geckos were also taken from the owner's purpose-built shed in the raid in Bermondsey last Thursday.

Two snakes were recovered after a man tried to sell them to a pet shop which originally supplied them to the owner.

Police say the snakes, valued at 2,000, could be dangerous in the wrong hands. A man, 58, was arrested and bailed in connection with the theft.

The remaining 16 snakes include four poisonous Western Hognoses.

I cannot stress strongly enough that, in the wrong hands, these snakes could be extremely dangerous
Detective Constable Bernie Cook
They are tan coloured with black and orange stripes on their bellies.

They are about 24 inches long with stout bodies and a distinctive upturned snout, from which their name derives.

Detective Constable Bernie Cook, of Walworth Burglary Squad, said: "The retail value of the snakes stolen was over 2,000.

"There is also an issue about the welfare of the snakes and how they are being looked after. They are from sub tropical regions and need specialist care.

"I cannot stress strongly enough that, in the wrong hands, these snakes could be extremely dangerous."

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