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A fall in the number of attacks on cash-in-transit couriers in the past year has been hailed. Statistics published this month by the BSIA (British Security Industry Association) cash-in-transit intelligence service, SaferCash, show a marked downturn in the number of attacks, from 751 in 2010 to 460 in 2011.
However, with criminals’ modus operandi constantly evolving, the industry, the trade body says that Government and police must continue to work together to remain one step ahead of the criminal, to protect more cash-in-transit couriers from falling victim to such attacks. Support from the judiciary is also an essential part of this work, and in 2011, about 950 years of custodial sentences were handed down for cash-in-transit offences dating back as far as 2009, with 19 offenders receiving sentences of more than ten years.
Ashley Bailey, Chairman of the BSIA’s Cash and Valuables in Transit (CVIT) Section. Ashley says: “Joint research commissioned by the BSIA and the Home Office has shown that in many cases, cash-in-transit offenders can be linked to a wide range of other crimes, from car key burglary to drug offences and even murder. Through the successful partnership working of the security industry, the government and police, these offenders that threaten the safety of communities across the country are now in jail.”
James Kelly, Chief Executive of the BSIA, pictured, says: “Following the record-breaking success of 2010, which saw the fastest decrease in cash-in-transit crimes for a decade, I am delighted to see that 2011 has continued this positive trend, with the number of attacks again at a ten-year low. Such a consistent level of achievement is testament to the joint efforts of industry, government and the Police in tackling this serious and violent crime.”
The trade body says these relative successes are the result of ten years’ worth of effort on behalf of all involved. In 2001, Operation Hawkeye represented the start of the intelligence gathering approach and was the forerunner of SaferCash. At that time, the industry felt that an average of ten cash-in-transit attacks a week was unacceptable, and these figures only continued to rise. While there has undoubtedly been a fall in attacks in 2011, it is important to acknowledge that the achievements made so far have only served to take us back to the same situation we faced ten years ago, the association points out.
However, with more stakeholders coming on board, the partnership approach is set to continue going from strength to strength. James Kelly adds: “Customers, including banks, petrol stations and supermarkets, have also made a significant investment in best practice to help reduce the number of attacks on their premises, and their support also will remain invaluable as we look towards improving these statistics even further in the coming years.”
For more information on the BSIA’s Cash and Valuables in Transit section and its SaferCash service, visit www.bsia.co.uk/cash-and-valuables-in-transit.