A man has been jailed for 20 months for stealing thousands of pounds from church collection boxes.
Stefan Bodnarczuk, 55, from Bell Green, Coventry, was arrested after being seen acting suspiciously at Fotheringhay Church in May 2013.
Detectives from Northamptonshire Police then discovered Bodnarczuk was carrying out an intricate operation stealing from churches in Northamptonshire, Lincolnshire and the Yorkshire Dales.
Bodnarczuk admitted three counts of theft and was jailed for 20 months at Northampton Crown Court earlier this month. A total of £37,740 was confiscated from him under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
Supt Andy Cox said: “This is an excellent piece of work by our officers. It was a long but worthwhile investigation which led to the seizure of offender assets and a good sentence.
“Bodnarczuk was methodical – the offences were carefully planned and systematic and may well have gone undetected had officers not made this arrest.
“Those in our communities can have confidence that we take rural crime extremely seriously and will always be proactive when we receive information from members of the public.”