West Midlands Police are one of the first forces in the country to fully embrace a new code of practice aimed at slamming the door in the face of thieves trying to sell stolen goods.
A Home Office Code of Practice encourages forces to get second hand stores signed up to a scheme where they check all items offered up for sale against the CheckMEND database which logs if goods have been recorded as lost or stolen.
The force have hundreds of stores such as Cash Converters, Cash Generator, Cex and other independent second hand stores signed up to the scheme and are launching it in style on 23 January with an Impact Activation Day.
On the day officers across the force will be at second hand stores, schools and shopping centres registering goods onto the immobilise database for free.
Each of the stores who have signed up check items offered for sale against the CheckMEND site. Each search generates a unique certificate number. This can be issued to a potential buyer to prove that at the time of purchase the item was not reported lost or stolen and no adverse information was recorded against it.
David Bursey from Byte size Solutions in Kings Heath, Birmingham said:
Now we can use CheckMEND we can buy items from people who come in off the street. We have been dubious about doing that in the past because we have not been able to trace the history of the item. This has opened up new possibilities in how we can conduct our business that is of real benefit to us and our customers.
DC Vanessa Lewis from Force CID who is heading up the project to get all West Midlands second hand stores signed up said:
Our officers have been passionate about getting stores signed up as one of the main ways we can stop the sale of stolen goods and ultimately deter burglars and thieves.
The more the public register their goods on immobilise, the more effective the system will be.
Avon & Somerset Police are offering students advice on how to deter thieves this week as part of Operation Relentless, keeping you safe.
On Sunday September 16 2012 3,000 students arriving at the University of the West of England were given advice on keeping themselves and their property safe by university-based PC Matt Holloway.
For the rest of the week, PC Holloway will be giving students the chance to register their laptops, phones, bikes and other valuables on www.immobilise.com as part of Relentless, keeping you safe.
Neighbourhood Inspector Bob Evely said:
Registering your property for free on the immobilise website, along with marking it with your postcode, is known to deter thieves. They know that we will be able to prove the item has been stolen and identify the rightful owner. UWE students wanting help with registering their property can contact PC Holloway at the police post at the university. Of course nothing beats making sure you lock your doors and windows and never leaving your laptop or other valuables on display in your car.
Avon & Somerset Police also recommend installing security software on phones and computers which can help trace your property if it is stolen. For more security advice visit their website, www.avonandsomerset.police.uk
Cycle theft in Sheffield is a growing problem according to recent report in the Star. It was reported that only 41 of the 1,595 bicycles stolen from Sheffield city centre in the last 10 years have ever been recovered by police. The number of bike thefts in the city has soared in the last decade, particularly around the railway station and the universities.
With the average stolen bike costing just under £400, that means cyclists in Sheffield have been saddled with a bill of £638,000.
Sgt Darren Nugent, from South Yorkshire Police’s city centre safer neighbourhood team, said:
Over the last couple of years bike theft has gone up and up.
We have caught two or three thieves who were out stealing bikes all the time, and taking those few out of the equation has definitely curbed bike theft.
Officers also have another weapon in their armoury – the tracker bike. The GPS-enabled bikes are locked at theft hotspots and left unguarded to tempt thieves. If stolen, the device alerts police by text and officers use Google Earth to pinpoint its location.
Sgt Nugent advised cyclists to spend at least 10 per cent of their bike’s value on a lock and said two locks were always better than one. He also urged bikers to register their property at Immobilise – the UK national property register.
The Immobilise Property Register is linked directly to Police systems helping to quickly identify the rightful owner of recovered property, for more information go to www.immobilise.com/about
Recipero is delighted to announce it has been awarded the prestigious ISO9001 accreditation. Les Gray Recipero’s designated lead on this project said:
We are delighted to have been formally awarded this accreditation. We have always worked within a framework of management processes and standards not dissimilar to ISO9001 and this now allows us to work towards several other accreditations we would like to achieve.
As part of the launch of Mayor Boris Johnson’s YOU Matter (Youth Organisations in Uniform) programme, the Mayor has become a member of the Immobilise National Property Register with the aid of the Merton Volunteer Police Cadets.
Volunteer Police Cadets demonstrated Merton Police’s latest crime fighting kit, a laptop and scanner provided by the National Mobile Phone Crime Unit (NMPCU), which uploads mobile phone IMEI numbers to the secure crime prevention web site at immobilise.com.
I would say to any young person, come on and give it a go!
Using the Mayor’s own phone, the Cadets explained how police use the unique IMEI number to identify stolen mobile phones and arrest offenders, whilst registering his handset on the free property protection database.
In plans outlined by the Mayor today, thousands of youngsters will have the opportunity to join uniformed groups like the Volunteer Police Cadets, Guides, Scouts and Armed Forces Cadets. The £1.3 million programme, being run by the Safer London Foundation, will help young people develop vital skills and instil discipline and responsibility in young people, particularly those who are or at risk of being excluded from education, training or employment.
The initiative is part of Team London, the Mayor’s strategy to harness volunteers to deliver key projects to improve the quality of life and opportunities of Londoners.
Speaking at the Merton Sea Cadets Centre for the launch, the Mayor of London Boris Johnson said:
Uniformed groups are a fantastic way for youngsters to get involved in a myriad of activities, which will help equip them with the skills they need to succeed in life. It’s a modern tragedy that so many of our young people are struggling to get a foothold in the jobs market and are drifting into crime. By instilling self reliance, discipline and a sense of competition, young people can aspire to a better future.
As Christmas approaches, Lincolnshire Police are urging people to log their expensive gifts and precious belongings on Immobilise.com, the world’s largest free register of ownership details.
Any item can be registered on Immobilise from small pieces of jewellery to plasma screen TVs and it is especially popular with people wishing to register mobile phones and bicycles. The system records serial numbers and also allows the user to upload a photo and description.
The database is linked directly to police systems, enabling officers to trace the owners of recovered property and to also identify the item as being stolen if found in the possession of a suspected thief. This ability to link suspects to a crime via the database means that Immobilise acts as a major deterrent to criminals.
Detective Sergeant Richard Myszczyszyn, from Skegness CID, said:
Burglars and thieves know that there will be rich pickings to be had in the post Christmas period and the use of the Immobilise database is a valuable addition to your crime prevention precautions. You can register as many items as you like, and then if they are lost or stolen you simply log back on to register them as such. The police can check any property they recover, whether that be from raids, routine checks on second-hand dealers or items brought into custody and, if they find anything that is listed as stolen, not only will you get your belongings back, but the thieves can be brought to justice.
DS Myszczyszyn ended by saying:
We want to send a clear message to those potential thieves that anything logged on Immobilise is too hot to handle. By registering your property and marking it as such, Lincolnshire residents can take steps to ensure they are much less likely to become a victim of crime.
The recommendation, published on the South Yorkshire Police website says, Police are urging people to log their expensive property and any other precious belongings on immobilise.com – the world’s largest FREE register of ownership details.
In addition to acting as a major deterrent to criminals, the big difference with Immobilise is that as well as getting your stuff back if it’s lost or stolen, the system helps to catch the thieves as well!
The database is linked directly to police systems, so when officers recover any property, for whatever reason, they can check it against items logged on Immobilise. For example, if someone arrested on suspicion of drunk and disorderly has your stolen mobile phone in their pocket, police will also be able to link the theft to them as well – but only if it’s registered!
Any item can be registered on Immobilise. The easiest items to log are electricals, or anything that has a serial number, but you can even log jewellery or ornamental items using the photo upload and description functions.
You can register as many items as you like, and then if they are lost or stolen you simply log back on to register them as such. The police can check any property they recover, whether that’s when a person is brought into custody for any reason, property recovered from criminals in raids, or even during one of their now routine checks on second-hand dealers. And if they find anything that is listed as stolen, not only will you get your belongings back, but the thieves can be brought to justice.
We want to send a clear message to those potential thieves that anything logged on Immobilise is too hot to handle. As a member of the South Yorkshire public, by registering your property, and marking it as such, you are much less likely to become a victim of crime.
Earlier in the month, the county saw a number of thefts of mobile phones from cafes, restaurants and bars where people were distracted by an offender who then took their phone.
Whilst these incidents have reduced, there are still a number of mobile phone thefts across Hertfordshire and police are reminding the public of three key things to keep in mind:
Register your phone for free onwww.immobilise.com It could help your phone to be returned to you if it gets lost or stolen.
Keep your phone safe Don’t leave it in your car, in an open handbag or pocket and never leave it unattended in a public place, even for a second.
If it gets stolen, block it immediately If you are unlucky enough to have your phone stolen, let your phone operator know immediately and they can block the phone so that a thief can’t use it – and also report it to police.
Unfortunately some people are tempted to report their mobile as stolen when they know they have lost it instead – false reporting is a crime. This is an offence and, where there is evidence, police will prosecute. Prior to reporting your mobile as stolen to police, you will be asked to make a declaration that you understand the consequences of making a false claim.
Posters with the numbers of mobile phone operators are now displayed in most station receptions and are available on the police website – search for ‘mobile phone security’.
If you report your phone as stolen to the police, officers need the serial number, known as the IMEI number, of your handset to be able to fully investigate the offence.
The IMEI is a unique 15 digit number assigned to the handset at the point of manufacture. It will be placed on a national database to which all UK police have access. If you don’t have IMEI number to hand, it will be on the box the phone came in or you can obtain it from your network operator. The best way is to register it for free on www.immobilise.com, that way you have an online record of number and police can return it to you if it gets lost or stolen.
You must also ask your operator for the handset and SIM card to be blocked so they don’t work any more.
Police are gearing up for T4 on the Beach next month, which is returning to Weston-super-Mare for the ninth year running.
Almost 50,000 people are expected to flock to the seaside town on Sunday 10 July to enjoy live music from a star-studded line up which includes chart toppers Jessie J, N-Dubz and Chipmunk.
But along with the fun and excitement, local police are working hard to ensure the weekend is safe and enjoyable for residents and visitors alike.
Superintendent Richard Cadden said:
Once again this year we have worked closely with the organisers of T4 on the Beach so that we are able to provide a safe environment for everyone. In previous years the event has proved really successful and passed off with only a handful of minor incidents. There will be additional police officers on duty over the whole weekend to ensure that people can feel safe and be safe whether enjoying T4, having a day out in the town or going about their daily business.
In the weeks leading up to the event police are urging people to think about what they can do to have a safe and incident free weekend. Last year the majority of incidents reported to the police involved lost or stolen mobile phones. This year police are urging people to register their property free of charge on Immobilise, www.immobilise.com. In the event that you lose your phone, you can use the facility to tell the police, insurance companies and the second hand trade – greatly improving the chances of recovering your property and capturing thieves.
Supt Cadden added:
This summer promises to be a busy one in Weston, especially with the new Grand Pier attracting many more visitors to the town and we look forward to welcoming back T4 on the Beach again this year.
For further information, including crime prevention and general safety messages, visit our website at www.policeatT4.co.uk.