Bid to stop cross-border crime leads to 70 arrests

PUBLISHED: 13:23 27 December 2019 | UPDATED: 13:23 27 December 2019

Police are investigating after windows were smashed in St Albans. Picture: ARCHANT

Police are investigating after windows were smashed in St Albans. Picture: ARCHANT

Archant

A cross-border police operation lead to 70 arrests, as teams from Hertsmere, St Albans and others set up to patrol motorways across the county.

More than 50 officers and staff from Herts police and its joint protective services units took part in a three-day traffic operation targeting cross-border criminality.

From Tuesday, December 17 to Thursday, December 19, officers from the police's Mobile Scorpion Unit, Road Policing Unit, Safer Neighbourhood Team and Scorpion teams in Three Rivers, Watford, Dacorum, St Albans, Hertsmere and Broxbourne focused on the county's busy motorway network.

Operation Chicha was led by Herts police and supported by Thames Valley police, Surrey police and the Metropolitan Police Service.

By proactively patrolling the M25, M40, M4 and M3 corridors, which span all four force areas, officers used automatic number plate recognition technology to identify people and vehicles of interest and the teams made multiple vehicle stops, searches and vehicle seizures.

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A number of motorists were reported for various road traffic offences such as no insurance, with more than 15 vehicles seized, and a large amount of intelligence was also submitted for use in further investigations.

Over the course of three days, 70 arrests were made across the four force areas for a range of offences including conspiracy to burgle, burglary, theft of catalytic converters, possession of drugs with intent to supply and drink driving.

Herts Det Insp Mike Hanson, Silver Commander for the operation, said: "I'd like to thank everyone who was involved over the three days for their support and professionalism.

"It's a great example of how working in partnership can create a bigger overall impact on criminality and I'm really pleased with the results.

"I hope this operation has sent a significant message to organised criminals who are intent on using our roads to create misery for our local communities in the run up to Christmas.

"We are not a soft touch and we will continue to root out those who travel to our area to commit offences."

Herts police have several other operations planned in the near future.

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