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17 July 2010, 06:00
Police from around the region converged on Bedfordshire on Thursday (15 July) as part of their drive to tackle illegal and unsafe drivers.
Using Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology, this major operation involving more than 200 personnel targeted a variety of crimes including drug dealing, burglary, insurance and car tax evasion and others.
Officers took part from Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Essex, plus Bedfordshire Police Special Constables.
They worked alongside enforcement teams from the DVLA, Department of Work and Pensions, Vehicle Operating Standards Agency (who regulate HGV safety) UK Benefits Agency, Her Majesty’s Courts Warrant Service (responsible for locating those who have skipped bail or not paid their court fines) and Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs who have a particular interest in illegal use of “red diesel”.
The operation ran from 11am to 6pm at Toddington Services (southbound) at junction 12 of the M1, and in Kingsway in Luton.
There were a total of 8 arrests and 31 vehicles seized for being uninsured or unlicensed.
Further offences were recorded by VOSA, the UK Borders Agency, Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, DVLA, HM Courts Warrants and Dept of Work and Pensions who were supporting the operation.
These included two people detected for benefit fraud, a £900 fine for green diesel and immediate prohibition for various vehicle defects.
The arrests included:
Superintendent Andy Martin, Bedfordshire’s Roads Policing Unit has been telling Heart:
“This is not about targeting the law abiding motorist but stopping those who use the roads to commit crime. The operation sends a clear message to criminals - burglars, drug dealers and many other types of criminals who use cars or access to vehicles to transport them around the country to their next crime will be detected. By using intelligence and technology combined we are able to stop them in their tracks.”