Police investigating the stealing of boilers in Fulwood have made a discovery.Advertisement
Since November 2012 there have been 32 reports of stolen or attempts to steal boilers in the northern area of the city.
Officers teamed up with Community Gateway Association to fit trackers inside boilers to try and catch the criminals.
This has led to the arrest of to men, aged 45 and 20, from Preston in connection with the boiler thefts. They are currently released on bail.
One of the tracked boilers was stolen in late February and tracked to a garage in New Hall Lane.
Officers raided the premises and found another 13 boilers.
Inspector Kevin McLean of Preston Police said: “Not only is there the criminal aspect to this, but tampering with any sort of boiler is extremely dangerous and the offenders are not only putting themselves at risk, but other innocent people too.
“We are determined to put a stop to this and Community Gateway’s tracker initiative should help us to do this – the message to the people involved in this sort of activity is that we are on to you and we will trace the people responsible for these crimes. Not only that but we will be targeting both the people that are responsible for the burglaries themselves, and the people who go on to accept this stolen property and profit from it.”
Martin Gibbons, Mechanical and Engineering Manager at Community Gateway Association (CGA) commenting said: “At CGA we have utilised many methods, including Smart Water and stencilling to protect boilers and other high value items in our properties.
“Working in partnership with the police team in Preston, we were informed of these tracking devices and we purchased and started to fit them, to combat the rising level of boiler thefts that have occurred over the past few months.
“To have a great result like this sends a clear message to people who are trying to profit from these burglaries. We will be utilising this technology further by installing more trackers in the future.”
Anyone with any information about suspicious activity in their area can contact police on 101 or alternatively, information can also be passed to the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or on-line at Crimestoppers-uk.org. No personal details are taken, information is not traced or recorded and you will not go to court.