British Transport Police's Gallery of Most Wanted in North Yorkshire
1:21pm 18th March 2013
British Transport Police (BTP) has launched Operation Impact in North Yorkshire to crack down on the theft of passenger property from trains and stations.
Property such as suitcases, bags, mobile phones and laptops remain a popular target, say BTP. However, the rail network is a CCTV-rich environment, they add, with excellent systems which regularly catch thieves in the act.
As part of the initiative, officers are asking for the assistance of the public to help identify a number of suspected thieves caught on camera and have released a gallery of their most wanted.
Operation Impact has been launched to deter thieves, and catch would-be offenders in the act through covert and overt policing operations. It will see dedicated teams of officers travelling on key routes throughout the area, undertaking increased patrols to target hotspot locations.
Police surgeries will also be held on trains and at stations to raise awareness of the issue and provide crime reduction advice to passengers.
As part of the operation, the gallery of CCTV images released shows people officers want to speak to in connection with a number of thefts.
Chief Inspector Glen Alderson said: “Officers investigating each of these cases have followed a number of lines of enquiry and circulated the images on police intelligence systems, and in some cases to the media, but so far without success.
“We’re now asking for help from members of the public. If you know any of these people and can tell us who they are, we want to hear from you.
“Our intelligence shows that thieves travel to commit crimes. So please look at these photos carefully, although the theft may not have taken place at your local station or on your local service, you may know the person who has committed it.”
He added: “We know that a large majority of items are stolen after they have been left unattended, so I would urge passengers to stay alert and keep their luggage close by and in view at all times if possible, and check on it regularly throughout your journey.
“We will continue to work closely with Network Rail and train operating companies to tackle theft. Please report any suspicious behaviour to a member of staff or police.”
Anyone with any information about the incidents, or who recognises anyone pictured in the CCTV images, should contact British Transport Police on Freefone 0800 40 50 40 quoting background log B2/NEA of 08/03/2013 and the reference number on the image, or text our non-emergency line on 61016.
- Luggage and suitcases account for half of passenger property stolen, followed by mobile phones
- A large percentage of items stolen have been left unattended on trains and at stations, when the owner returns they have gone
- A high proportion of thefts take place when the victim is asleep
- Items are mostly stolen from luggage racks in vestibule areas
- Offenders operate within a 25 mile radius of their home address
- Thursday and Friday between 13:00 and 20:00 are the key times when property is taken
- Over 70% of all thefts take place on trains, the remaining occur on stations
Passengers who protect their possessions will greatly reduce their chances of becoming a victim of crime. The following are a few simple tips which will help:
- Try to keep luggage close by and in view and check them regularly whilst on the train and at stations
- Do not leave valuable items unattended on a train when you visit the toilet or buffet car
- If you are going to sleep on a train, do not leave valuables in view on the table or seat next to you. Keep them hidden
- Ensure any bags placed on the on the floor are in front of you so that any movement of the bag will be noticeable. Placing bags on the floor behind you increases the risk of theft
- Keep purses secure and carry wallets in an inside pocket
- Zip up hand and shoulder bags
- Carry bags in front of you with flaps against your body
- Keep straps short and bags tucked under your arm
- Install a tracker application on your smartphone, which could help trace your device if it’s stolen
- Stay alert and aware of what's going on around you when using your phone in public
- We're more likely to recover your property if you have marked it properly
Register your bicycle at www.bikeregister.com and your phone and other electrical gadgets at www.immobilise.com
- Keep a record of the unique reference number (IMEI) on your mobile phone. To get this, dial *
- Always use your phone’s security lock or PIN number
- Insure your possessions and keep the insurance details handy
York - A suitcase was stolen from a train at York railway station on Monday, 12 March 2012. Police believe the suspect boarded the train at Doncaster, travelled to York before alighting then re-boarding to steal the suitcase.
York – On Thursday, 17 May 2012, a suitcase was stolen from a train at York station. The victim had boarded the train at Dundee, and due to the weight of the case, had placed it by the toilet doors in the vestibule area. Three people boarded the service and crowded around the case at York, one of them then stole the case.
Doncaster to York – On Friday, 29 June 2012, a mobile phone was stolen from on a train travelling between Doncaster and York. The victim left their phone on a seat before moving to another. When they realised, they returned and asked the couple who were sitting in the original seat. They denied seeing the phone but CCTV shows them taking it.
York - A suitcase was stolen from a train at York railway station on Saturday, 4 August 2012. The victim boarded the train at York, and placed their suitcase in the luggage rack. A short while into the journey they discovered it had been stolen.
York – A bag was stolen from a train travelling from Newcastle to London Kings Cross on Friday, 30 November 2012. The bag was placed in the luggage rack at Newcastle and was discovered missing in London. CCTV revealed the bag was stolen at York.
York – On Sunday, 24 February 2013 a two men boarded a delayed train at York station and stole a bag before jumping off the train prior to its departure.
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