Stolen power tools
Hundreds of stolen tools belonging to tradesmen
working across the North-west remain unclaimed - despite an appeal
by police in St Helens last month.
The expensive drills, jig saws, chop saws and whizzers
were seized by officers carrying out a warrant at a house in the
town centre in December. A 51-year-old man was arrested on
suspicion of handling stolen goods and is currently on police bail
until next month.
Detectives organised an Aladdin's Cave public open day
in which people whose homes, sheds, garages or vehicles had been
broken into could go along and see if their belongings were among
those found during the raid.
But despite a positive response with things like
laptops, games consoles, sat navs and even a BMX or two having been
claimed, tools belonging to tradesmen who may have fallen victim to
a burglar or thief years ago have been left behind.
Detective Constable Jeff Huxley, who has already
reunited an Apple Mac with its rightful owner in Liverpool and some
electrical testing kit with a utilities company in Berkshire, said
the task had been a laborious one.
"This really has been a difficult task due to the
sheer number of items we have found at this one house in St
Helens," he said. "The officers who searched the property found
tool boxes and equipment everywhere and spent seven hours
"The investigating was passed to CID and I have spent
the past few months painstakingly trying to identify who each item
originally belonged to.
"We have had some successes where things have been
security marked, which is something we always advise you do, and
the open day was worthwhile.
"But there are still many people out there, largely
tradesmen, who have yet to come forward. Although the goods were
seized in St Helens, they may have been stolen from elsewhere in
"I suspect that most of them will belong to
electrician and plumbers but could in theory belong to a whole
range of tradesmen. My message to them is that if you have had
things stolen from a works van in the months leading up to last
December in St Helens or the surrounding area, email me with
information about any distinctive features or markings and we will
look to get them back to you."
Information you should look to provide as proof of
Details of any crime reference number or incident log
number given to you by the police when you reported the original
crime, regardless of which force you made the report to.
Any proof of purchase or ownership.
Details about any identifying marks that may be on the
item being claimed as well as a description of it.
Anyone who is able to positively identify an item as belonging
to them will be required to give a statement to the police as part
of the evidential process.