More than 400 arrested in crackdown on criminals using West Yorkshire's roads

Supt Pat Casserly
Supt Pat Casserly
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Police have arrested more than 400 people suspected of using roads in West Yorkshire to carry out or flee from crimes.

West Yorkshire Police launched Operation Spawood at the beginning of November.

Officers have been out on the roads, along with the Dog Support Unit and police helicopter, as part of the proactive initiative targeting those who steal vehicles or use them for burglaries or drug dealing.

Of the 400 arrests recorded to date, a third have been charged for offences and many others remain on police bail or under investigation.

Superintendent Pat Casserly of West Yorkshire Police’s Operations Support urged relatives of car thieves to stop them endangering themselves and others.

He said: “I am deeply conscious about public safety and risks created by criminals on the roads. Some of them, are acting under the direction of organised criminal gangs and in reality being paid very little to steal very expensive cars. I urge the loved ones of these offenders to discourage and stop them from putting themselves at risk greater than imprisonment.

“Our teams are better equipped than ever before; There is no hiding place. My officers have the commitment, skills and dedication to make the lives of criminals harder, and will do everything they can to detect and intercept them and bring them to justice.

“We want to disrupt and undermine criminals using the roads of West Yorkshire and will continue to be a driving force on the county’s roads to keep our communities safe.”