Vehicle owners warned by police

PUBLISHED: 18:29 30 June 2008 | UPDATED: 21:31 31 May 2010

METAL thieves who target valuable car components hit four vehicles in the Saffron Walden area last week. Police have issued a warning to vehicle owners after a spate of catalytic converter thefts. Sgt Mick Ashton, of Saffron Walden Police, said: We ha

METAL thieves who target valuable car components hit four vehicles in the Saffron Walden area last week.

Police have issued a warning to vehicle owners after a spate of catalytic converter thefts.

Sgt Mick Ashton, of Saffron Walden Police, said: "We have seen an increase in these types of crimes, possibly connected to the rise in the price of metals. Particularly it is large vehicles which are being targeted because they are easier to get underneath."

A yellow Ford Transit van was hit while it was parked at the Uttlesford District Council offices in Saffron Walden, sometime between 6pm on Friday June 20 and 7am on Monday June 23. The catalytic converter was valued at £200.

A grey Land Rover Freelander, parked at Saffron Walden County High School, had its converter - worth £740 - stolen between 8am and 10.30pm last Sunday (June 22).

A £300 catalytic converter was stolen from a Ford Transit van while it was parked on Kilhams Green, Langley Lower Green, overnight last Monday (June 23).

And on the same night thieves targeted a £480 converter belonging to a blue Land Rover Freelander, parked on the Street, in Manuden.

Police have issued advice to help people and businesses protect their vehicles. Large cars and vans should be kept in well lit areas; access to the converters can be made more difficult for thieves by parking vehicles side by side, and up against a wall if possible; company vehicles should be kept in a secured yard with CCTV, and if possible, staff should be allowed to take them home.

For more information, contact crime reduction officer Peter Caulfield on 01376 556233.

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