DETECTIVES have launched an investigation after masked intruders broke into a house in Burnley and stole thousands of pounds worth of jewellery.

At about 7.45pm yesterday (Monday, February 3rd) police received a call from a 13 year old girl saying that three masked men had broken into their house on Rossendale Road, Burnley by climbing through a window.

The intruders threatened the girl and her 12 year old sister with a knife before putting them in a wardrobe while they searched the house.

While police arrived at the address around five minutes after the 999 call, the offenders had already made off with gold jewellery worth more than £10,000 and they are now being hunted.

The two girls were left shaken but unhurt and they are being supported by specially trained officers. At the time of the incident the parents had just left to visit family nearby leaving the two girls home alone.

Detective Inspector Jim Elston, of Burnley Police, said: “It is possible the offenders thought the house was empty at the time they forced entry but on realising the young girls were at home they could have left but instead they have threatened them with weapons, placed them in a wardrobe and then rummaged and searched the family home.

“Both girls reacted with great courage and showed resilience in what must have been a very frightening ordeal.

“We are now hunting these offenders and I would appeal for anyone with any information to get in touch with us.”

Anyone with information should call police on 101 quoting log number 1119 of Monday, February 3rd.