POLICE in Northumberland have joined forces with other agencies to target criminals on the roads.
On Monday, February 21, officers were joined by staff from VOSA (Vehicle and Operator Service Agency) and Customs and Excise in an enforcement phase of Operation Coin, an initiative to target and disrupt metal theft in the county.
Operation Coin has been running in Northumberland since November and involves officers visiting scrap dealers, carrying out high visibility patrols and operations on the main arterial routes in the county.
Since its launch, police have stopped more than 1,500 vehicles, arrested 28 people and recovered stolen property including metal, televisions, electrical equipment and plant machinery.
Detective Chief Inspector Colin Green said: “Metal theft is a national problem but it’s very much a priority for us here in Northumberland.
“Although Operation Coin is aimed predominantly at those who are stealing metal, high-profile operations like this should serve as a warning to anyone breaking the law in Northumberland that we are taking action.
“If you’re just doing your job picking up scrap metal, you have the permission of the owners and all your certificates in place then you have nothing to worry about.
“But if you’re committing an offence, carrying stolen metal or your vehicle isn’t safe then you will be stopped, checked and action will be taken.
“At the heart of this operation is the public. We need their help as our eyes and ears in the more rural areas of Northumberland.
“If you see anyone or anything suspicious then contact us.
“Take down registration numbers, vehicle details and as much information as you safely can and we’ll do the rest.”