By Shelby Brooks

Alex Sutherland wants the citizens of Wonthaggi to be on the look out for Ned Kelly.

Alex’s Ned Kelly statue was stolen from underneath his orange tree while he was in hospital.

His beloved Ned Kelly statue was stolen from his yard while he was in hospital last week.

Ned Kelly has stood as a look out for Alex for 30 years, moving from home to home from New South Wales to Victoria.

Although Ned has a few chips, Alex said the statue is “very sentimental” to him.

“I’ve had him for so damn long,” Alex said.

Ned stood by Alex’s mother’s front door for some time as well, protecting her when he couldn’t.

Alex thought thieves targeted Ned while he was in hospital for a week, and only noticed he was gone on Sunday when he returned home.

Nestled under Alex’s orange tree in his front yard on Cameron Street, Ned stood watching the street, “stopping people nicking my oranges!”.

Alex is hoping to have Ned returned to him, so Ned can make his last stand back under the orange tree.

No other statues or gnomes from Alex, or his neighbour’s yards were stolen, so it appears Ned was targeted.

And strangely, the thieves filled the hole in the ground that Ned left.

He would welcome the anonymous return Ned back to his garden, or if someone has any tips privately email news@sgst.com.au.