A STARTLED burglar fled from a garden centre café after a voice screamed at him to leave - despite nobody else being in the room.

Owner Jamie Foster was on a coach on his way to the airport in the Dominican Republic at the time when he shocked the raider, and a coach full of holidaymakers, by screaming at his phone.

The 34-year-old from Laindon was alerted on his phone to somebody inside The Lillies Cafe, Alpha Garden Centre, Wickford, who was raiding the till.

The CCTV had been activated and Mr Foster was watching from another continent.

He said: “It was a very quiet coach and then I just started shouting at my phone. I think I made a few people jump. If anyone was asleep, it would have woken them up.”

Detectives are investigating the break-in and have released an image of a person of interest.

Mr Foster said: “I got a notification about movement from my Ring camera system at the café.

“It showed there was a man inside, I managed to shout at him to try and make sure he left.

“He got in through a skylight window and stole about £50 from the till.

“I wasn’t able to call the police as I was abroad, so had to get one of my members of staff to contact them for me.

“When I saw him in the café, I was in a state of panic initially and wanted to get him out of cafe as soon as possible.

“It seems as though it was opportunists both times, I think it was a case of people thinking let’s go in there.”

It was the second raid this year following a burglary in March.

He said: “I am constantly checking the cameras to see if anything is happening.

“Luckily these incidents haven’t happened when the café has been open so it hasn’t had as much of an affect of the staff as it has on me.”

During the last incident two men broke into café and stole tablets used for ordering food and caused about £8,000 worth of damage.

They made away with the three Lenova tablets, as well as smashing an alarm system and damaging a side door in the process of breaking in.

During the latest incident officers were called at around 7.10pm on Thursday, September 27. CCTV was released yesterday. Anyone with information call Basildon police station on 101 quoting crime reference 42/140385/18.