Ashley Cole's girlfriend pleads for help in chilling 999 call as robbers raid mansion

11 May 2022, 15:35 | Updated: 11 May 2022, 16:08

Ashley Cole's girlfriend pleaded for help in chilling 999 call
Ashley Cole's girlfriend pleaded for help in chilling 999 call. Picture: Getty/Alamy

By Megan Hinton

Ashley Cole's girlfriend Sharon Canu could be heard screaming in a 999 call as she begged police to stop a group of burglars from raiding the couple's Surrey mansion.

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An emergency services recording was played out to jurors at Nottingham Crown Court on Wednesday in which the former England footballer's partner could be heard screaming before the line cut out.

Model Sharon begged a female police operator: "Please, please someone is coming in the house."

The operator replied: "We will get some help to you, okay? They are in the house at the moment?"

Sharon can then be heard saying "yes they are coming up the stairs" then a terrified scream echoed across the phone line before it went dead.

Giving evidence today, she explained: "Seconds later one man opened the door. I screamed and got my son, and he went 'shush'. He wanted my phone."

Sharon said the man then ended the phone call to 999 and then left the room to find Ashley who she found "on his knees with his hands tied behind his back".

Recalling the horrifying evening she continued: "I walked out. I didn't know if I was supposed to, but I needed to know where my daughter was.

"Ashley was there on his knees with his hands tied behind his back.

"My daughter is just standing there next to him. I went with my son still in my arms, and got my daughter.

"I knew what was going on, and what they were asking him. I just focused on my kids."

Kurtis Dilks, 34, denies being part of the gang and faces three charges of conspiracy to commit burglary, four charges of converting criminal property, three charges of conspiracy to commit robbery and two counts of robbery.

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PrettyLittleThing X Hailey Baldwin - Arrivals
PrettyLittleThing X Hailey Baldwin - Arrivals. Picture: Getty

The court was told that the masked men were threatening to torture Ashely Cole by cutting off his fingers with electricians pliers when police arrived and rang the buzzer causing them to flee.

Jurors were told the gang told the footballer they were going throw acid on his face or burn him alive and in a police interview Mr Cole cried: "I was on my knees, waiting to either be killed... I'll never see my kids again.

"The aggressive guy was shouting. 'You are f****** lying to me, I am gonna do you'.

"He kept saying, 'Let me cut his hands. Let me cut his fingers. Give me his fingers'."

On Tuesday the court was shown footage of the ex-Arsenal, Chelsea and Derby defender recalling how a minimum of four men broke into his Surrey home in January 2020, shortly after he had settled down to watch Netflix.

Mr Cole said he had just got back from work with Chelsea's under-15s before hearing a "banging sound".

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Kurtis Dilks, 34, is charged with being part of the gang
Kurtis Dilks, 34, is charged with being part of the gang. Picture: Alamy

He told police: "As soon as I put Netflix on, literally 10 to 15 seconds after that, I heard like a banging sound.

"I could hear it was like outside of my bedroom, just to the left, coming through the window.

"The banging was vibrating up the walls into my bedroom.

"I literally looked at Sharon... and I said 'what's that?'

"She said 'I don't know but that's not a normal noise'.

"I got off the bed and said to her 'this is why I should keep a weapon, like a golf club, in my bedroom'."

Mr Cole said he then looked at the cameras on his phone to see if he could identify the intruders.

He said: "I could see they were carrying a ladder towards my balcony.

"I said 'Sharon, there's someone in the garden trying to get on the balcony... call the police'."

He continued: "Now I see a minimum of four running from a bush which is probably 15 yards away or so.

"They half-shouted 'agh' and charged towards my bottom windows.

"I knew now, I am going to die.

"I have got my kids in the house and I have no-one to help.

"I tried to shout on the balcony as loud as I could.

"I just looked at (Ms Canu) and said 'there's people coming in the house, get the kids and call the police'.

"She was shook and a little bit scared."

Mr Cole told police that he went to get his daughter while Ms Canu went to get their son.

He said: "I thought if I hide maybe they're going to be more angry and if I have got my baby on my lap they won't hurt us."

The former England defender then appeared to get emotional as he put his hands on his face, before saying: "I said it wouldn't affect me, but Jesus."

Nine other men are also on trial for their alleged part in the series of "ruthlessly executed" burglaries - including the theft of a £3.5 million tiara.

The trial continues.