Garda warning as Cork shopper has €4,000 worth of Christmas presents stolen from their car

A Garda spoke of how criminals were recently able to force their way into five vehicles in one week alone - all of which were imported and lacked immobilisers.
Garda warning as Cork shopper has €4,000 worth of Christmas presents stolen from their car

Gardaí pleading with people not to have their Christmas presents on display or -failing that - to leave their gifts and property in the boot and out of view.

CORK’S Crime Prevention Officer is warning shoppers not to leave Christmas gifts in their cars following the recovery of stolen goods valued at €4,000 for one vehicle owner.

Sergeant Brian McSweeney spoke of how criminals were recently able to force their way into five vehicles in one week alone - all of which were imported and lacked immobilisers.

One Cork vehicle owner had €4,000 worth of property taken, the bulk of which were Christmas gifts purchased for friends and family.

Sgt Brian McSweeney said it was fortunate that on this occasion they were able to retrieve the property.

However, he is pleading with people not to have their Christmas presents on display or -failing that - to leave their gifts and property in the boot and out of view.

“People spend their hard-earned cash on these presents,” he said. 

“It’s the same old story. We are asking people not to leave valuable items in their cars and, more importantly, don’t advertise them to criminals. At this time of year people are so focused on rushing and getting other things done that they let their guard down. This results in a loss of security.”

Imported Japanese cars have become a particular target for thieves in recent times due to their absence of immobilisers.

Sgt McSweeney is warning people with these types of cars to protect their property by fitting a steering wheel lock.

“The thief knows that Japanese-imported cars don’t have immobilisers so they will attempt to break in. If you go to the garage and have an immobiliser fitted, the thief is not going to know this and will still break in and try the ignition with a screwdriver.

“However, if a steering wheel lock is visible they will not see the point in destroying the car.”

He also recommended the Garda Síochána property app as a precautionary anti-theft measure. The free app, developed by An Garda Síochána, allows the user to record and index your property, including bicycles, laptops, and farm machinery among other items.

The app gives users the facility to record the unique information associated with their property. Should your items be stolen, the app also provides a way of reporting this to An Garda Síochána and gives you the option to share the information with investigating gardaí. You can safely record personal information in the app before you begin to record your property you can then take a photo of it and enter associated information with the item.

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