Blitz on burglars saves county millions

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A blitz on burglars by Sussex Police has helped save the county more than £2 million this year and seen a handful of people in Eastbourne and other Sussex towns arrested and charged with offences in recent weeks.

The Home Office estimates that every domestic burglary costs an average of £5,000 in terms of damage caused by the criminal, the value of the items taken, the emotional cost to the victim and the criminal justice system bill for investigating and prosecuting offenders.

The latest figures for this year show that the number of burglaries committed in Sussex has fallen by almost 15 per cent - down from 3,281 between April 2012 and January 2013 to 2795 in the equivalent period in 2014.

Using the government’s calculations, reducing the number of burglaries by 486 has saved the people of Sussex just over £2.4 million over the last 10 months.

Sussex Police launched Operation Magpie in June to tackle burglary across the county.

Detective Superintendent Jez Graves said, “We’ve had some great successes in catching and charging burglars and their accomplices since the launch of Operation Magpie.

“On a daily basis our officers and staff are working extremely hard and with real focus to prevent and detect the burglary of people’s homes.

“It is pleasing when our investigations result in the recovery of victims’ property and the imprisonment of offenders but we also put a lot of effort into trying to prevent the offences happening in the first place through visible and targeted patrols and by working with our communities and partners in relation to crime prevention.

“I’m pleased that there are fewer crimes and less victims but one burglary is one too many and I am determined to keep the pressure on criminals.”

In recent weeks 23-year-old George Winter has been charged with two burglaries in Upperton Road, Eastbourne, in January and Andrej Popov, 38, of Cambridge Gardens, Hastings, has been charged with a burglary in Tovey Close in Eastbourne during which thousands of pounds worth of jewellery was stolen.

It has also seen the arrest of three men for 13 burglaries in central Eastbourne from November to January. Stolen laptops, electrical items and bank cards have been recovered and the suspects have been released on bail until March 10.

If you have information about a burglary call 101, email or call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

If you see a burglary taking place call 999.