Video: Hull police returning more stolen goods to owners as officers work alongside second-hand dealers
MORE stolen property is being reunited with its owners than ever before after a shake-up in the way officers investigate thefts in Hull.
About £6,000 of stolen goods has been recovered after the appointment of two officers who are working closely with second-hand dealers.
Humberside Police has also introduced two new scanning devices to allow staff to stay out on the road as part of a major crackdown.
Detective Constable Andy Bradley and investigating officer Seb Petch have been working with crime teams and partner agencies.
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Mr Petch said: “We have been using the two new scanners for the past few weeks and they are making our job a lot easier.
“It means we can instantly find out if property is stolen and it saves on a lot of paperwork back at the station.”
High-value items such as mobile phones, laptops, tablets, cameras and bicycles are regularly stolen and sold on, often to fund drug habits or criminal activity.
Although these goods all have serial numbers or unique reference numbers, the amount of property recovered from thieves and house searches far outnumber what is recorded on databases.
Police are urging people who own or rent anything of value to register it for free online, enabling second-hand dealers to access the information and contact victims of crime.
DC Bradley said: “The main chains of second-hand shops work really well with us and often tip us off about people trying to sell on what they believe to be stolen goods.
“Using the equipment, it enables us to make prompt arrests and stolen property is being recovered and going back to its owners a lot quicker.”
The new officers have already had success after working closely with retailers to identify a prolific offender, and three other suspects, who are all in their late teens.
The gang were charged in December for handling stolen property and other offences, including robbery.
Detective Chief Inspector Paul Cunningham said: “We have created the second-hand dealer posts to streamline the process of identifying stolen property, identifying the offender and returning it to the rightful owner.
“The successful arrests of the four teenagers in December, shows the investment in the new equipment, fast and appropriate action by officers and good detective work can offer results.
“It takes criminals off our streets, meaning there are fewer victims of crime.”
He also stressed the importance of people registering their valuables online.
“We have a new electronic property system and we are being pro-active,” he said.
“We now need the public to work with us."
• To register your goods online, visit www.immobilise.com