Steel grip of justice tightens as metal thieves targeted in police crackdown

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Police made a series of arrests and seized stolen cables during a national day of action aimed at targeting metal thieves.

Officers from British Transport Police arrested six people and made eight seizures of stolen metals as well as a firearm yesterday. Two men from Nottingham who were arrested in Derbyshire have been released on police bail.

Detective Inspector Mick Jackson, of British Transport Police’s dedicated Operation Leopard team, said: “These arrests form part of ongoing work we are undertaking with Network Rail and local police forces to tackle this crime, work which is having a great effect.

“As part of the day of action to track down those responsible for cable theft we visited scrap yards as most cable thieves look for the quickest way to sell on the stolen goods.”

Deputy Chief Constable Paul Crowther, who heads the Association of Chief Police Officers metal theft working group, said: “As we approach 2012 I can assure everyone that efforts to reduce metal theft and its impact will continue. Thieves and unscrupulous dealers will find the UK is not prepared to suffer any further and we will not hesitate to take action against anyone involved.”

The railways have been hit by a series of cable thefts in recent months, causing huge disruption to train services.