Police have arrested a number of suspects and seized hundreds of suspected stolen tools after a four-month crimewave in East Hampshire and along the A3 corridor.
Since August this year Hampshire Constabulary has received more than 100 reports in Hampshire of vans being broken into and tools being taken from within.
These offences are concentrated around the east of the county and up the A3 corridor, taking place when it’s dark in the evenings or overnight, but offences have been reported all over Hampshire.
Areas targeted in East Hampshire include: Horndean, Petersfield, Greatham, Liphook and Bordon.
Four people have been arrested in connection with these offences:
- A 24-year-old woman arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to steal from a motor vehicle. She has been bailed with conditions until February 27 pending further enquiries.
- A 60-year-old man from Surrey arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to steal from a motor vehicle. He has been bailed with conditions until February 28 pending further enquiries.
- A 26-year-old man from Bedfordshire arrested on suspicion of theft. He has been bailed with conditions until February 27 pending further enquiries.
- A 26-year-old man from Buckinghamshire arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods. He has been bailed with conditions until March 1 pending further enquiries.
Pictured above is an image of a large haul of tools Hampshire Constabulary seized on November 30 at a market stall in West London.
"Our efforts remain ongoing to actively track down the owners to reunite them with their goods," said a police spokesman.
"What we have noticed is that a number of the tools we have seized have not been marked. Our plea to tool owners is to protectively mark your equipment so that if it is ever lost or stolen, it can be easily returned to you when it’s found."
Hampshire Constabulary has also shared the following crime prevention advice:
- Wherever possible remove your tools from your vehicle and store securely overnight.
- Mark the tools clearly with your name/company name and address using paint pens and seal with a clear lacquer spray. Other property marking systems are available.
- Consider using smart/GPS tags on high value items to enable them to be tracked.
- Use a lockable cabinet within your van to store the tools during the day.
- Use a small camera designed to record within vehicles.
- Take photographs of items of value, making a note of the serial numbers and registering them online at a property register site.
For more general advice about preventing thefts from vehicles, see here: https://www.hampshire.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/keeping-vehicles-safe/vehicle-safe-and-sound/
If you have been affected or have any information about these incidents that could assist the force's enquiries, please don’t post this online, report it to us here instead: https://www.hampshire.police.uk/tua/tell-us-about/cor/tell-us-about-existing-case-report/ or via the 101 number, quoting 44230391471 – Operation Boromir.