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Police seize cabling, drain covers, beer barrels and cash from scrap yards

Police have arrested 10 men at four scrap dealers across Wiltshire in an anti-theft operation.

Officers arrested two men in Swindon, four in Trowbridge and four in Chippenham. Offences included theft, handling stolen goods and burglary.

Items seized included a large quantity of BT cabling, some SSE cabling, six computers, 20 large Wessex Water valves, drain covers, beer barrels and almost £11,000 cash.

Police were working in partnership with Wiltshire Council, Swindon Borough Council, the Environment Agency, BT, British Transport Police, Wessex Water, The Vehicle and Operator Services Agency and Smartwater during the operation.

Wiltshire Police acting chief inspector Pete Chamberlain said: “We are pleased with how the operation went and the way in which so many organisations came together to help tackle this crime.

“We must now carry forward the momentum from this operation and continue to work closely with our partners to ensure we use the full range of resources at our disposal to help tackle this type of crime. This is not a one off.” 

Home secretary Theresa May last week said the government would seek to ban cash transactions for scrap metal and increase fines for trading stolen material as action ramps up against rampant metal theft.

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