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Humberside Metal Theft Initiative

Humberside police

2:38pm 2nd April 2012

Humberside Police are participating in a regional initiative to help regulate the scrap metal industry and restrict the movement of stolen metal.

Operation Tornado, which has already been successfully trialled in the North East, is designed not to inhibit dealers operating legitimate businesses but to identify unscrupulous dealers who operate outside the law and to send message to criminals that there is no market for stolen metal in Yorkshire and the Humber.

It is being implemented by the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), the Home Office, the British Transport Police (BTP) and the four police forces of Yorkshire and the Humber (Humberside Police, North Yorkshire Police, South Yorkshire Police and West Yorkshire Police) in collaboration with other regional partners in government and industry.

From today, all persons disposing of metals to participating scrap metal dealers must provide proof of their identity by producing either a photo card driving licence or an original passport, or national identity card and in each case, this must be supported by a utility bill showing the sellers current address.

To support the launch of Operation Tornado, over the last few months officers from North East Lincolnshire together with representatives of NELC and the Environment Agency have been successfully working closely with the trade to raise their level of professionalism and support the concept of the "responsible trader" by actively encouraging greater due diligence in their working practices. 90% of the local Scrap Metal Dealers are actively supporting this initiative.

On Saturday 31st March 2012 officers from Humberside Police, NELC, The Environment Agency and British Transport Police undertook a combined education and enforcement operation to combat metal theft and to ensure compliance with environmental law within North East Lincolnshire.

This involved the inspection of 3 registered Scrap Metal Dealer sites, checks of the vehicle activity around these sites in relation to compliance with waste carrying and waste transfer legislation and visits to a number of sites believed to be involved in the handling of scrap metal but are not as yet registered with the Environment Agency and/or N E Lincolnshire Council.

Although the main aspect of this operation was education some British Telecom cabling believed to be stolen was located at one of the sites and a number of penalty notices were issued carriers loaded with metal who could not produce waste carrier certificates.

The message to the public is simple. Along with our partner agencies we are doing all we can to catch metal thieves, however they also have a role to play by reporting information about crimes, or those offending in order to eradicate the crime across the region.

If you can identify where the bulk of the stolen metal is going, then we can focus our activity on this yards and those people and we can support the legitimate traders. Therefore If you know who is responsible for metal theft tell Humberside Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 11, or online at www.crimestoppers.uk.org.
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