Police warn builders to protect tools

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police1BUILDERS have been urged to secure their construction sites and tradesmen to secure their toolsin the lead up to the holiday period.

The warning comes after police identified a group of people from Young in NSW, believed to be responsible for at least 43 thefts from toolboxes and utility vehicles around Gungahlin between August and October.

Last month, police raided houses in Forde and Crace, seizing carpentry tools, toolboxes, drills and a generator all suspected to be stolen. Police also seized 100 tablets, suspected to be steroids, from the house in Forde.

A 20-year-old man is expected to be summonsed to face the ACT Magistrates Court at a later date charged with theft. It will be alleged he stole a quantity of tools from more than 100 vehicles and trailers over the past six months.

A 19-year-old man is also expected to be summonsed to the ACT Magistrates Court at a later date to face charges relating to receiving stolen property.

Officer-in-charge of Gungahlin Station, Sgt Jeff Knight, said the outcome of this investigation demonstrates how important it was to report theft to police, as a chain of offences may become apparent and assist the police investigation.

“This was a primarily intelligence-led investigation by Gungahlin Patrol who worked closely with AFP Forensics, ACT Policing Intelligence and Criminal Investigation detectives which generated this outstanding result,” he said.

Master Builders ACT executive director, John Miller said: “Each year we deal with issues where theft has impacted both in terms of time and cost on projects and in a number of cases some more diligence in securing tools and valuable equipment may have prevented losses.

“With the approaching Christmas and New Year period I would remind the industry to double check their sites, particularly those in more remote locations, before vacating for the holiday season.

“It doesn’t always require an expensive technology or alternative security option to protect tools and equipment, sometimes it is just a more conscious awareness in thinking about how to remove or reduce any vulnerabilities.”


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