A SCRAP yard boss involved in a £475,000 car 'fencing' plot has been jailed for 27 months.

Lewis Hester, 25, who ran a recovery firm in Great Harwood, was part of an operation which struck across the north of England.

Preston Crown Court heard the gang, which also included Timothy Bolchover, 34, and Matthew Clegg, 35, took delivery of cars shortly after domestic and commercial burglaries.

Low loaders were used to steal plant equipment and stolen vehicles were fitted with cloned plates, the court heard.

Thieves may also have used cloned keys to get into cars, said Judge Simon Newell.

Prosecutor Alex Langhorn said Hester could be directly linked to four stolen vehicles and had handled cars and plant valued at £142,000.

Hester, of Lyndhurst Road, Blackburn, admitted to conspiracies to steal and handle stolen goods.

Bolchover, of Lion Street, Church, was jailed for 46 months and Clegg, of Beech Close, Rishton, was jailed for 42 months after confessing to the same offences.