Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting WONEWS to 80360, or email
Crackdown on metal theft a ‘great success’
A crackdown on metal thieves and travelling criminals has been hailed a “great success” by Otley’s police inspector.
Forty-eight vehicles and 67 people from Wharfedale, Aireborough and Horsforth were checked during the operation on Friday.
Police officers brought suspect cars and vans from the Otley, Guiseley, Yeadon, Rawdon and Horsforth areas to the car park of the Hare and Hounds pub in Menston to be examined.
Seven vehicles, including three loaded with scrap metal, were immediately seized. Two others were found to be illegally running on red diesel, and one was seized when the owner was unable to pay a spot fine.
The multi-agency operation also led to: l seventeen vehicles being issued with immediate prohibition notices, and so held at the site, after being deemed unroadworthy l twenty vehicles failing to meet West Yorkshire Trading Standards’ regulations l a cannabis warning being issued to one person caught in possession of the drug; and l two people having their benefits stopped after checks were carried out by the Department for Work and Pensions.
Eight tickets for various road traffic offences were also issued as part of what Inspector Richard Coldwell, who heads the Otley-based North West Outer Neighbourhood Policing Team, described as a stark warning to criminals.
He said: “The day was a great success, both in terms of the results and in sending out a very clear message to travelling burglars, metal thieves, rogue traders and bogus callers, that they can expect to come under the spotlight if they come into our communities to commit offences.
“By joining forces with such a wide range of partner agencies, it gives us a number of different sticks to beat them with, and means we don’t have to rely solely on finding evidence of criminal offences.
“We have previously run a number of similar operations across the area, and will continue to do so in order to protect our communities and show criminals they are not welcome here.”
The neighbourhood policing team worked with Special Constabulary colleagues and staff from West Yorkshire Trading Standards, HM Revenue & Customs, VOSA and the Department for Work and Pensions on the crackdown.