Bogus callers stole jewellery worth £800 from an 82-year-old man in Rottingdean after one of them pretended to have lost his dog.
One of the three conmen told the victim that he had lost his dog in the garden of the victim’s home in Little Crescent, Rottingdean, at around 2.30pm yesterday.
While the elderly man was distracted by the first man, two other men entered his home, stealing the irreplaceable jewellery.
Detective Sergeant Sally Hodges said: “The victim has been left shaken and is devastated to have lost the jewellery, some of which belonged to his grandparents and has great sentimental value.
“Detectives are in the early stages of investigation and are being assisted with house-to-house inquiries by PCSOs.
“Anyone who saw anything suspicious is urged to contact police.
“Anyone turning up on a doorstep unplanned should be viewed as suspicious until they prove otherwise.
“If you are not happy with the caller and your suspicions are aroused call Sussex Police on 0845 6070999 or in an emergency dial 999.”
The suspects ran from the scene, after the victim caught two of the men stealing the jewellery.
They are described as being in their mid to late twenties, white, and wearing jeans and dark tops, possibly fleeces.
Anyone with information about the distraction burglary is asked to contact Sussex Police on 0845 6070999 or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.