Fourteen arrested after scrap metal raid
4:11pm 22nd March 2012
(Updated 4:35pm 22nd March 2012)
Fourteen people were arrested during raids on a scrap metal recycler in Goole yesterday, Wednesday, 21st March 2012, as British Transport Police continue to crack down on scrap metal dealers suspected of receiving stolen metal.
Operation Rifle involved officers from British Transport Police’s major investigation team, the national dedicated cable squad, the Force’s High Tech Crime Unit and the Financial Investigation Team supported by North Yorkshire Police, Network Rail, BT and HMRC.
Officers raided and issued search warrants on two premises, Wagstaff Recycling on Long Lane and a house in Templar Close in Goole.
14 people were arrested as part of the operation, six members of staff including the yard owners and management were taken into custody at Selby Police Station and interviewed by detectives.
Details of arrested persons
- Three men all from Castleford, aged 24 & aged 49 - bailed until 16 May, and a 50 year old - bailed until 17th May.
- A man aged 20 from Carlton in Goole – bailed until 16th May
- A man aged 50 and a woman aged 48, from Whitley near Goole – bailed until 17th May
- Eight workers at the yard were also arrested and have been street bailed pending further enquiries.
Following the arrests a thorough search of both premises were made by officers. A cash sniffer dog was also used in the operation and over £62,000 in cash was seized. CCTV and computers, mobile phones and hard drives were seized as evidence.
Detective Inspector Paul Langley, part of BTP's Major Investigation Team was heading the operation. He said:
“This operation targeted a key scrap metal dealer who we suspect of handling stolen metal and profiting from proceeds of metal theft and money laundering.”
“Scrap metal dealers have a responsibility to ensure the metal they buy is from legitimate sources and that they keep appropriate records. It is not acceptable to turn a blind eye to stolen metal. By helping criminals to turn stolen metal into cash, often quickly and easily, dealers are fuelling this crime which is blighting our infrastructure and disrupting the lives of ordinary people on a daily basis.
“Whilst longer term we are looking for a change to the legislation to make it harder for stolen metal to be sold, we will continue to work within the current legislation to target the business practices of those dealers who willfully flout the law for their own gain. Today’s operation sends a clear signal that we will not allow dealers to ignore the law.”
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