Car Thieves, Beware!

Secret "trap" cars used by police to catch criminals in act

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When Fulham man James Adams, 26, decided to break into a car in Prothero Road, he was in for a nasty shock.

What Adams didn't know was that the car was one of the decoy vehicles used by Hammersmith and Fulham police to tackle as part of the fight against car crime.

These cars are parked around the borough and have cameras capable of recording high quality footage of thieves in action.

After being caught in the act, Adams pleaded guilty to both this offence and also another theft from a motor vehicle in the W14 area. He is now spending five months in prison contemplating his big mistake.

Detective Inspector Foley, Hammersmith Crime Squad says:
"The beauty of this type of operation is it's ability to put the fear back in the minds of the criminals. They literally just don't know if the next car they break into is one of ours."

This year alone the operation has caught over 35 thieves with an impressive 100% conviction rate, and forms part of a wider crime reduction strategy which has seen a fall in crimes such as robbery and burglary by 5.5% across Hammersmith and Fulham.

Police also offer these crime prevention tips for reducing thefts from cars:

• Lock and secure you vehicle at all times.
• Keep Valuables out of your car and leave nothing on show.
• Hide all keys, including car keys, out of sight when indoors.

November 18, 2011