Online campaign teaches rail travellers to spot theft tricks

A CAMPAIGN to help train users keep their property safe from pickpockets and ‘gadget grabbers’ has been launched by police amid fears that rates of theft are rising.

British Transport Police has issued video clips to help the travelling public spot 13 of the most common tricks thieves use as part of its Operation Magnum campaign.

Officers are working with train operating companies to disrupt and deter thieves who target unsuspecting commuters and tourists at busy stations or snatch smartphones costing hundreds of pounds from distracted passengers’ hands.

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New figures reveal that theft at stations and on trains across the country rose by 16 per cent last year, while in the North East region, which includes Yorkshire, the rate rose by seven per cent.

There were 1,056 thefts of personal property in 2012/13 compared to 989 the previous year in the region, while luggage thefts climbed from 219 to 283.

Police are currently investigating a spate of thefts at Leeds station last month.