Metal theft day of action success

POLICE in Cambridgeshire arrested a man and issued fines as part of a national day of action against metal theft.

However, detectives said they were pleased with the majority of what they saw at scrap metal premises across the county.

Police and partner agencies visited six dealers - two in Peterborough, one in March and three in the south of the county on Wednesday (December 14).

The visits were part of the force’s Operation Gandalf and also involved representatives from SmartWater, British Telecom, the Environment Agency, Peterborough City Council, British Transport Police and Norfolk Constabulary.

Nine British Telecom drain covers, suspected stolen, were found at a site in March and a 32-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods.

A vehicle was seized for having no insurance at the March site while in Peterborough fines were issued to motorists using trailers to carry scrap without insurance.

Detective Inspector Sharon Dence said: “The day was a real success. Some of the sites were being well maintained and run but we are looking to work with other sites to help them adhere to legislation.

“We gathered a lot of intelligence and we had good feedback from the partner agencies who were involved.

“If we can make it hard to dispose of stolen metal we can reduce the number of thefts, particularly low-level, happening across the county.”

Anyone with information about metal theft should contact police on 101, or if a crime is in progress, 999.

• The 32-year-old from March was released on police bail to return to Huntingdon Police Station on January 11.