Joining forces to stop metal theft

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POLICE in West Yorkshire are joining forces with the Environment Agency to crack down on metal thieves.

Culprits of the crime – which costs the country an estimated £770 million a year – target hospitals, schools, homes, cemeteries, railways and faith buildings.

Last month in Calderdale, police stepped up patrols at an industrial estate on Armitage Road, Brighouse, which had been repeatedly targeted.Officers also stopped any vans acting suspiciously in Hove Edge and Lightcliffe after thefts.

Neighbourhood policing teams and Environment Agency officers will be visiting scrap dealers to ensure they are adhering to the law and work with them to identify potential culprits.

Superintendent Ged McManus from West Yorkshire Police’s local policing department, said: “Working with the Environment Agency is enabling us to boost the powers we have to tackle the growing problem.

“Metals are disposed of through scrap metal dealers, of which many are legitimate, however there are a number of unlicensed dealers. They often work out of lock ups and garages and this is where we can work with the Environment Agency to put them out of business.”

Anyone with information about unlicensed dealers or metal thefts should call CrimeStoppers on 0800 555111.