A Worthing man has been jailed as part of Operation Magpie launched by Sussex Police to tackle burglary across the county.
Mark Coop, 26, of Whitebeam Road, Worthing was jailed for six months after he admitted breaking into a home in Magnolia Close, Worthing in July.
Continuing Operation Magpie police are visiting second hand dealers across the region to try to cut the bottom out of the burglary market.
Officers will target second hand shops to look for stolen items being offered for sale and to give advice to shopkeepers on how they can prevent themselves being fooled into accepting criminal property.
The operations are being run as part of a three-week burglary campaign that started yesterday (Monday October 27th) and for the first time involves four forces – Sussex, Surrey, Kent and Thames Valley working together.
Among the other tactics being used by the four forces are extra patrols in areas where burglaries have been committed, regular conference calls between detectives across the region to share intelligence on crimes and criminals and the use of distinctive crime prevention displays to urge residents and businesses to protect themselves against burglars.
The visits to second hand shops are designed to cut the supply chain for burglars by preventing the sale of stolen goods – stopping the thieves from making money from their crimes.
If you are found trying to sell stolen items they will be seized by police and you will not get compensation for them. Instead you could be charged and convicted of handling stolen goods – an offence for which you can be jailed for up to 14 years.
Detective Chief Inspector Tanya Jones, of Sussex Police, said: “This is not about harassing second hand dealers but about working with them to tackle crime and help prevent them losing out financially as well.
“The vast majority of second hand dealers have no intention of ever buying stolen goods and many take steps to ensure they reject any items they are offered that they are unsure about.
“Unfortunately there is a minority of shopkeepers who will happily buy and sell stolen goods as long as they make some money out of it. We need to find them and get them off the streets so that there is no marketplace for stolen items in Sussex.
“If we remove the marketplace, burglars will find it harder and harder to profit from crime and will have to take greater risks to sell the items – making it easier for us to catch them.”
If you see or hear a burglary taking place call 999 immediately.
Residents can also being encouraged to register their items on the world’s largest property database so that if they are stolen, they can be reunited with the owners – and so the offenders can be prosecuted.
Follow the burglary campaign on Twitter using the hashtag #LightLockList.