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Metal theft team

British Transport Police (BTP) in Scotland has secured funding to establish a team of officers to be based in the east of the country to target cable and metal thieves as well as unscrupulous scrap metal dealers.

Kenny MacAskill, the Scottish Government’s Cabinet Secretary for Justice went to a scrap metal dealer’s premises in Edinburgh, with representatives from some of the agencies most affected by the problem including Network Rail, Scottish Power, the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency and the British Metal Recycling Association to hear of the announcement during three days of activity.

During the visit the SNP politician met police officers and others undergoing training who are being afforded access to the premises, Bernard Hunter Limited, 600 Gilmerton Road, Edinburgh, to experience the metal recycling process and site at first hand.

Chief Superintendent Ellie Bird, area commander for the Scotland area of BTP and chair of the ACPOS Metal Theft Group said: “The establishment of this team, and ensuring organisations training today have the capability to work together across Scotland, enables us to better protect our infrastructure and minimise the disruption to our communities. What may appear to some as insignificant has the potential to disrupt businesses, delay major transport routes and pose a real risk to the most vulnerable.

“Our presence in the east of the country will help protect the investment in the soon to be built Borders Railway and minimise the risk posed by organised crime groups.

“I am convinced that this continued commitment from colleagues from numerous agencies across Scotland will ensure that we are better prepared to protect our assets and disrupt criminals.”


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