The story begins seven months ago, with the seemingly random
abduction of a garden gnome from the property of a Gloucester
pensioner, Eve Stuart-Kelso. After noticing its absence, the
grandmother of three presumed it had been stolen, and soon forgot all
Yet last week, she opened her front door to find the
missing leprechaun, which she had nicknamed Murphy, staring up at her.
Beside the battered garden ornament lay a tightly wrapped parcel,
containing an album of 48 photos showing him engaging in daring
activities at exotic locations all over the globe.
The gnome-snatcher who took Murphy on a round-the-world trip was yesterday exposed as 22-year-old law graduate Simon Randles.
is taking a year out before joining the Royal Marines in February and
he decided to take the stone ornament with him on his travels after
spotting him in a suburban garden.
He owned up to owners Derrick and Eve Stuart-Kelso, who took it in good spirits.