A SERIAL burglar fled to Spain after intricately planning and researching 12 heists in order to steal almost £1million in cash, designer goods and jewellery.

David Buisson indulged in what was described by the judge as “an orgy of burglaries” stealing valuables and large sums of cash from homes across Essex including Canvey.

Among his victims was The Apprentice’s Sir Alan Sugar, whose Chigwell home was burgled twice in June last year, and West Ham boss David Sullivan.

Bussion used a ladder to get inside Sir Alan’s home and took £184,000 in watches and jewellery, while reports state Mr Sullivan had offered a £25,000 reward to anyone with information after his home was broken into last June.

Bussion was not charged with the attempted burglary at the West Ham boss’s home.

Detectives investigating the crimes linked them to the 49-year-old in April last year and raids were carried out at his homes in Ongar and Woodford.

Investigators recovered tools used for picking locks and a drone which may have been used to spy on homes, as well as jewellery which had been stolen.

One of two computers seized showed internet searches for some of the addresses that were burgled.

The police traced Buisson, of Stanley Place, Ongar, to Spain and he was arrested under a European Arrest Warrant in Fuengirola in April this year.

The court heard Buisson had been on courses instructing him how to break into safes and he had done extensive research into the properties he had targeted between December 2015 and June 2017.

He admitted 12 burglaries and two attempted burglaries when he appeared at Basildon Crown Court on July 10.

Sentencing him Judge Graham said: “You are 49. How this orgy of burglaries came about is very difficult to understand.

“You’ve not been able to explain it yourself.”

Judge Graham sentenced Buisson to eight years in prison and he was made the subject of a serious crime prevention order to last five years.

Det Insp Rob Staples said: “The detectives involved in this complex investigation left no stone unturned to identify and locate David Buisson to hold him to account for his part in these offences.

“Det Sgt David Wilkinson and Det Cons Russ Chamberlain, along with their colleagues, have worked tirelessly on this case and worked closely with law enforcement colleagues both in the UK and in Spain. I am pleased for the victims the man responsible for these burglaries has been brought to justice.”

A hearing will be held at a later day to try to recover as much of the property as possible.