Police are looking for a burglar they suspect is covered in bee stings, after he broke into a fully-functional bee hive.

The criminal mastermind made his move on the innocuous-looking shed in Station Road, Hampton, at some point between 4pm on Tuesday, January 28, and 10am the following day.

Richmond police said he would have been stung numerous times and are appealing to pharmacists and hospital workers to come forward if they have encountered a sting-pocked person.

Detective Sergeant Chris Brown said: “Bee stings at this time of the year are unusual and we would ask that you get in contact with police.”

Anyone with information, or who knows somebody with bee stings on their face or hands, is asked to call 101 or to remain anonymous call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

A spate of shed burglaries have hit the area in recent weeks, with police advising people to lock their valuables away, although enlisting the help of insects may be an idea.