A Ukrainian family have been left heartbroken after callous thieves stole their dog six days after they arrived in the UK from their war-torn country. Lina and Oleksiy Litvinova, both 40, drove more than 2,000 miles for three days across 10 countries to escape the Russian onslaught.
They travelled with their two children, Ivan, 17, nine-month-old Kira plus Lina’s mum Larysa, 66, and their Yorkshire terrier Ellie, who they’ve had since a pup. The family moved into a temporary home in Streatham, south west London, last Monday while awaiting a permanent residence.
But their eight-year-old dog was pinched on Sunday morning and police are now hunting the callous crooks.
Ellie had managed to run out of the house but Lina claims two people in a red BMW stopped and told passersby they were the owners.
She said they then snatched the dog and drove off with her in broad daylight.
Lina, 40, said: “We are heartbroken. Me and my mother can’t stop crying.
“This sort of thing just doesn’t seem to happen back in our home town of Kharkiv. But we arrive here in England and within a few days Ellie is snatched.
“I don’t know why she was stolen and I don’t particularly want the people punished. We just want Ellie back.”
Ring doorbell footage showed the moment the BMW stopped in the middle of the road outside the family-of-five’s house.
Ellie then can be seen running out.
The dog is on a special pancreatic diet adding to the family’s fears that she could come to harm.
A Met Police spokesperson said: “Police were contacted at approximately 1.40pm on Sunday, August 7 to reports of a dog theft from Ellison Road, SW16.
“The dog was reportedly stolen at around 10.30am that morning from outside an address. No arrests, but enquiries into the circumstances continue.”