ON THE BEAT, January 2013

I WOULD like to start 2013 by wishing you a happy New Year and telling you about a new service that has been introduced to combat fraud.

From this month, members of the public who wish to report any kind of fraud including cyber crime can report this directly to Action Fraud.

This service is run by the National Fraud Authority – the government agency that helps co-ordinate the fight against fraud in the UK.

Action Fraud provides a ‘one stop shop’ and has useful advice and guidance to prevent further victimisation.

Victims can contact Action Fraud either by telephone on 0300 123 2040 or through the website at actionfraud. police.uk.

Leaflets giving more information are available from all police station counters.

My second topic is, I am afraid, a repeat from previous years!

I have passed on crime prevention advice via this column on a number of occasions but feel it is necessary to do so again!

One of my Safer Neighbour hood Teams recently patrolled an area that had suffered some break-ins to cars. I was disappointed when they reported back that they had seen sat navs on charge in clear view in vehicles, a laptop on the back seat and several cars unlocked.

I know that some criminals are opportunistic and two that were arrested the other day admitted that they only stole from insecure vehicles.

A few simple precautions genuinely could prevent you becoming a victim.

I know this won’t stop all crimes but please lock your vehicles when they are not attended, lock your doors and windows at home and continue to use timer switches to light up your house.

INSPECTOR PAUL CROWLEY, KIDDERMINSTER POLICE

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