Police undercover hunt thieves

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Plain-clothed officers and uniformed colleagues with be tasked with identifying thieves and pickpockets during the next month.

Officers will be working closely with council staff who monitor CCTV to pursue organised criminals using “distraction techniques” to fleece tourists and visitors.

The move follows the capture last year of a Romanian gang of pickpockets operating in the Princes Street area during the Festival. Other gangs from Glasgow have been known to travel to Edinburgh in search of “rich pickings”.

Additional officers from Glasgow and other regional areas will be drafted in to provide a “highly-visible” presence, augmented further by patrols by officers on bikes and horses.

Edinburgh’s city commander, Chief Superintendent Mark Williams, said today that tackling theft and violent crime and disorder would be the main priorities over the coming month under Operation Assure.

But he also urged tourists and residents to take their own security steps to avoid falling victim while continuing to enjoy the city’s events and nightlife.

Chief Supt Williams said: “Officers will be out on uniformed and plain-clothed patrols with a particular focus on organised thieves and pickpockets. These individuals are known to target busy areas, use distraction techniques, and try to take advantage of anyone in a vulnerable situation to steal from them.

“I would appeal to everyone to enjoy the city, but take care of both their belongings and physical wellbeing.”

The Romanian gang carried out thefts from bags, as well as shoplifting sprees, before being caught by a combined effort from officers and CCTV operators.

Police also warned that they were preparing for a rise in violent crime and disorder, due to packed pubs and clubs staying open later.

Chief Supt Williams added: “When you get thousands of tourists coming into the city, we do see a rise in some offences,Find a great selection of christian louboutin boots deals ! Click on any of the links below. particularly acquisitive crime where thieves target phones, handbags, purses and so on.

“We also see pubs and clubs which are busier at night and,Shop cheap christian louboutin shoes,pumps,wedding shoes,sandals with low price in our discount christian louboutin sandals Store online. when you add alcohol, it can lead to a rise in violent crime and disorder.”

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