Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Roger Godsiff says metal thefts are “sickening and dangerous attacks.”

Birmingham Hall Green MP, Roger Godsiff MP is calling on the Home Office to take urgent action to tackle metal theft:
"Metal theft is becoming an epidemic, and urgent action is needed from the Home Office to put a stop to these sickening and dangerous attacks. The Government should back the police in their fight against metal theft by pledging to change the law to make it easier to stop this organised crime.
"The vandalising and theft of war memorials is shocking and disgraceful, undermining the respect that all our communities want to show to fallen heroes.
“In addition households face repeated power cuts, commuters face increasing delays, churches and public buildings are being damaged, all as a result of escalating metal theft. In my own constituency, four churches have had lead or copper taken at least twice.
"This out of touch Government needs to get a grip and crack down on this crime. It is still too easy to trade stolen metal. We need a much tougher licensing regime for scrap metal dealers, including requiring people selling to metal dealers to prove their identity, and stronger powers for the police to investigate. We need to support legitimate trade but make it easier to stop organised crime.

“When cases are becoming this serious, the Home Office shouldn't turn a blind eye or just leave it to the police. We need action and we need it now.”

1 comment:

  1. This is a problem that is seriously affecting my business. We have had approximately £80K in copper stolen but it has caused millions of pounds worth of damage.

    All scrap dealers deal in large amounts of cash, they have to due to the nature of their business. This is where it is open to abuse, records are not kept and false details are given. Any scrap dealer who knows, or suspects the legality of the metal being sold to them, will smelt quickly to avoid any potential ID on the metal, this is why spot checks help only a small amount. Also the fines imposed in the West Mids recently were around £1000, hardly a deterrent when copper trades at £4K per Tonne!

    I am pleased that you mentioned the Home Office, their attitude is that metal theft does not affect anyone 'personally'. This is so far from the truth.

    We recently had a positive dna match on a known criminal, this person could not explain the large amounts of money that they had (tens of thousands), also they were known metal thieves. The CPS decided against prosecution on the grounds that 'anyone could have stolen the coat and left it on our premises'

    This lawless situation needs addressing as it must be costing a huge amount in insurance payouts, policing, council infrastructure repairs and people like us going out of business.

    What about a 'scrap czar' to head up an investigation and action plan?