Dramatic fall in number of Cambridgeshire metal thefts

Cambridgeshire Police

Cambridgeshire Police - Credit: Archant

THE number of metal thefts in Cambridgeshire has fallen by almost two thirds.

There were 810 offences recorded between April 1 2012 and March 31 2013, compared to 2,311 crimes during the preceding twelve months – a decrease of about 65 per cent.

This reduction has been attributed to the launch of Operation Magnet, an intensive campaign against metal theft, in April last year.

Cambridgeshire Police, working with local councils, British Transport Police and BT Openreach, has made regular visits to scrap metal dealers, targeted vehicles carrying scrap metal and carried out days of action.

Det Insp Sharon Dence, the force’s lead on metal theft, said: “The drop in metal theft is excellent news but we will not be complacent and our commitment to tackle theft and ensure dealers take their responsibilities seriously will not diminish.


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“Metal theft is not a victimless crime. For example, theft of underground cable can potentially have an impact on thousands of people by knocking out phone lines and internet services.

“We are working with six councils to tighten up registration and enforcement around yards and we are sharing information regionally and nationally in order to prevent and detect crime and recover stolen property.”

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One specific crime that has been targeted is theft of catalytic converters.

DI Dence added: “We started routinely taking information on people selling catalytic converters.

“This resulted in thefts being significantly reduced and they have stayed low despite some spikes nationally with lots of our yards deciding to stop taking catalytic converters as it was not worth their while.”

You can report any suspicious behaviour to police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111. If a crime is in progress, call 999.

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