Cycle Task Force prevents haul of stolen bikes being sold
01 October 2012
The Metropolitan Police Service Cycle Task Force (CTF) funded by Transport for London has prevented a haul of Brompton bikes worth over £20,000 being sold illegally.
On Monday 17 September officers from the CTF - a dedicated team to tackle cycle theft in London - returned 42 brand new bikes which had been stolen from a consignment back to Brompton.
"The actions of the CTF has disrupted this illegal organised activity."
The theft occurred at a motorway lay-by in Essex at the beginning of August.
Following enquiries officers suspected a number of the stolen bikes were being sold online. A search warrant was carried out in Leyton on 24 September, where two of the bikes - confirmed as being from the original shipment, were recovered.
Further enquiries led officers to a pawnbrokers in east London where a further five bikes were recovered. Store records showed a further two had been sold over the counter and officers are now actively trying to trace them. Whilst police officers were at the store a van containing 35 Brompton's, still in their boxes arrived, a 65 year old man was arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods at the scene. He remains on police bail.
Chief Superintendent Sultan Taylor, Safer Transport Command, said: "These bikes would most likely have ended up being sold to unsuspecting buyers and could have left them out of pocket if they were subsequently seized. The actions of the CTF has disrupted this illegal organised activity and resulted in Brompton being reunited with 42 of their bikes.
"Working with our policing partners and TfL, we are using a range of tactics to tackle cycle theft and are determined to bring offenders to justice to ensure that Londoners continue to get on their bikes.
"Operation Cycle Ops is a long term partnership initiative, where we will target bike thieves. We need the public to provide us with information and intelligence about cycle theft."
Steve Burton, Director of Community Safety, Enforcement and Policing at TfL, said: “This is a fantastic result by the Cycle Task Force and their dedicated work continues to minimise cycle theft in capital. We will continue to work with our policing partners to ensure that anyone who attempts to steal bikes will be held accountable and brought before the courts.”
If you have any information about the stolen Brompton's or cycle theft in general, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
A 65 year old man arrested on September 24 on suspicion of handling stolen goods has been bailed to return on a date in November.
A 45 year old man arrested on September 24 suspicion of handling stolen goods was subsequently released with no further action.
A 44 year old man arrested on September 27 on suspicion of handling stolen goods has been bailed to return to police in on a date in December.
A 42 year old man arrested on September 28 on suspicion of handling stolen goods has been bailed to return to police on a date in November.
Notes to Editors:
- We encourage people to follow our guidance on buying used bicycles. Details can be found on our website:
- The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) Cycle Task Force, funded by Transport for London (TfL) is a part of the MPS Safer Transport Command (STC).
They are a dedicated unit to tackle cycle theft and improve cycle security and safety pan-London. TfL and the STC are working together with British Transport Police and City of London Police to continue to reduce cycle theft in London.
Tactics including bike marking and registration events, police officer engagement with cyclists, high-visibility patrols, surveillance, intelligence-led operations and covert policing tactics are part of Project Cycle Ops.