The collision management specialist’s freedom of information request data – from 43 of the United Kingdom’s 45 police forces – shows that 117,000 vehicles were stolen each year between 2009 and 2014 (on average).
Of these thefts, 30,000 per-annum were not investigated by the authorities even though the estimated yearly value hit £173 million.
And it seems the police were less inclined to investigate thefts from businesses as some were considered civil law, rather than criminal issues.
Neil Thomas, Director of Investigative Services at Accident Exchange’s Fraud Investigation Department, said: “If a vehicle owned by a business rather than an individual – such as a fleet vehicle or garage courtesy car – goes missing, frequently the police tend to consider it a civil crime because the business has effectively allowed someone the use of that car.”
‘Not just companies’Accident Exchange’s Neil Thomas added: “Increasing pressure on police forces in the form of budget cuts and overstretched resources means not enough time can be dedicated to the investigation and retrieval of stolen vehicles. But it isn’t just companies that are affected by the findings of our study – a proportion of those thefts not looked into will be private car owners, too.”
The traffic collision specialist continued: “This is further evidence that we need police, insurance firms, law enforcement agencies and private companies to join the dots and collaborate if we are going to truly take the fight to car thieves.”
The police service as a whole has to prioritise what we do and how we do it.”
Mr White continued: “We know that the public expects better of the police – and we believe that every crime matters to the victim, to society and to the law. We will continue to do the best we can with the resources we have”, he said.
ARTICLE AUTHORStephen Turvil
POSTEDFri, 15 Jan 2016
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