Copper thieves in spectacular escape

BRAZEN thieves made a Hollywood-style escape when they rammed their van through the gates of a company yard with £2,500 of stolen copper cable onboard, it emerged today.

BRAZEN thieves made a Hollywood-style escape when they rammed their van through the gates of a company yard with £2,500 of stolen copper cable onboard, it emerged today.

Workers had raced to prevent the barefaced duo from making a speedy exit from the BT vehicle repair centre in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich, after catching them in the act carrying out the daylight raid.

The pair drove into the yard at 3.20pm last Friday but were spotted as they loaded the cable into a blue Nissan panel van.

Keith Baker, workshop supervisor, said: “Someone sussed they were taking cable so they went down and locked the gates.

“I think they realised that we were on to them and made their get away and smashed through the gates.

“They have got a cheek and they are brazen but they think they can get away with it.”

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Mr Baker said it was a miracle no one was hurt as the van almost collided with a car on the opposite side of the road.

He added: “They were very lucky because it is not often you get to that junction and have it clear.

“As they hurtled through they nearly hit a car on the other side of the road and it was a bit frightening for them (the people in the car).

“They could have hit a pedestrian or a pram on the pavement.”

The men got away with what police described as “a large amount” of copper from the skip into the van, they locked themselves inside the vehicle and drove at the gates, ramming their way out.

The van's front bumper fell off in the impact and was left behind as the thieves drove away. It has since been handed to police and is being used in efforts to try to track the van.

The copper piping had been removed from the ground and was in skips ready to be taken off for recycling.

The driver of the van is described as white and was wearing a high visibility jacket.

His passenger was also white, with light brown short curly hair and a light brown beard. He was also wearing a high visibility jacket.

Did you witness the theft? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

COPPER theft has been on the increase in Suffolk over the past year, police said today.

Louise Rosher, spokeswoman for the force, said: “In the last six to 12 months Suffolk police have noticed an increase in copper theft, this is due to an increase in the value of copper and other scrap metals.

“Businesses and people who have copper on their premises should ensure its security.

“Police are interested to know where this copper is being disposed of.

“Advice on security can be obtained from your local crime prevention officer by calling 01473 613500.”

Anyone with information about the theft should call Pc Matthew Jay at Ipswich police on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

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