A new campaign to tackle the serious problem of metal theft has been launched by An Garda Síochána in conjunction with Crimestoppers and ESB Networks.
The new campaign continues the work of the Metal Theft Forum, which was established in 2012 to develop a metal theft prevention and crime reduction plan.
Metal theft affects a large number of businesses and communities and includes the theft of electricity cables, copper wires, road signs, beer kegs, electrical goods, letterboxes and goalposts.
recently reported that metal thieves are also targeting catalytic converters in hybrid cars around the city.
Catalytic converters in hybrid vehicles are being targeted because there is less corrosion as there is less usage of it to process pollutants.
Thieves are keen to steal them because they contain palladium, rhodium and platinum, which are very valuable.
Of particular concern is the sharp increase in ESB Network station break-ins and the ongoing theft of electrical cable.
There have been 43 break-ins to ESB Networks substations in 2019.
John O’Driscoll, Assistant Commissioner of An Garda Síochána said:
"Stealing metal from ESB Networks' equipment causes power cuts which impact on families, businesses and the economy in general.
Mr O'Driscoll continued:
"I am also specifically appealing to any person involved in the purchase and or resale of metal products, to ask appropriate questions and report unusual sources of metal as you may inadvertently facilitate criminal activity and commit an offence of handling stolen property, if you purchase metal that is stolen".
An Garda Síochána are calling on members of the public and, in particular, the farming community with overhead power lines on their land to be vigilant of suspicious activity and to come forward with any information they may have on metal theft and people engaged in this illegal activity.
Information can be provided to your local Garda station, by calling ESB Networks on 1820 372 999 or by the Crimestoppers confidential telephone service by calling 1800 25 00 25.