Metal Theft Reduction Centre established
The Business Crime Reduction Centre, the National Metal Theft Taskforce and the four police forces of the Yorkshire and Humber region have formed the most comprehensive partnership yet to tackle metal theft.
Other agencies joining in the concerted effort to reduce attacks on the region’s infrastructure include local authorities, the Environment Agency and Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs.
The aim is to detect and deter criminals who attempt metal theft and vitally to deny them the outlets for selling stolen metals.
Initiatives such as Operation Tornado which targets scrap metal dealers and demands that they record the names and details of individuals selling metals will make it much harder for thieves to find an outlet for stolen materials.
In order to assist in the coordination of this effort and to provide practical support to companies, churches and heritage sites BCRC has appointed Graham Wilson to establish the metal theft reduction centre which will share best practice in the region and offer practical support to hard pressed victims of metal theft.
The Yorkshire and Humber region is a national hotspot for metal theft, this is due in part to the long history of engineering and steel production, which means many local businesses use all types of metals in their day-to-day activities – making an easy and plentiful target for criminals.
In addition to frequent attacks on local businesses the telecoms and transport infrastructure is also being severely disrupted. This causes hospitals to delay operations, businesses to be offline and rail journeys to be delayed or cancelled.
To add to the negative economic impact metal theft creates, local churches and heritage sites are under attack for lead roofing or irreplaceable plaques and statues.
The police, with a range of other agencies are uniting to fight back against the onslaught and BCRC, through the establishment of the metal theft reduction centre intends to play a leading role in the partnership to reduce the crime.