Three men in York have been arrested after a suspected stolen vehicle was tracked down by policing using an all-seeing eye in the sky.
A blue Land Rover Defender Turbo, worth more than £10,000, was reported stolen from the Pickering area, between 1 and 2 November.
On Thursday 5 November, acting on a tip-off, North Yorkshire Police officers went to a location south of York at 9.50pm.
Officers used a drone with a thermal imaging camera to peer through the darkness into a locked compound.
From above, the drone clearly identified a parked Land Rover with a glowing white bonnet – indicating that its engine was still warm. The vehicle was recovered for forensic examination.
The following day, officers arrested three men in York on suspicion of theft of a motor vehicle.
They have been released under investigation as enquiries continue.
Public are ‘eyes and ears’
Earlier this year, North Yorkshire Police published crime prevention advice after a spate of Land Rover thefts from rural areas – advice which officers are reiterating today.
A spokesperson for North Yorkshire Police said: “It is important that all Land Rover owners, and especially those living in rural areas, take extra precautions to secure their vehicles.
“Members of the public act as our eyes and ears, and so if you are aware of any suspicious activity around parked vehicles, please call us, and we will take action.”
Police advice for Land Rover owners
Owners of Land Rovers in North Yorkshire are being asked to follow this crime prevention advice:
- Fit a vehicle tracking system
- Always leave your vehicle locked and alarmed if possible
- Park in a locked garage or other secure area if you have one, or in a well-lit open space if not
- Consider fitting an after-market approved immobiliser
- Never leave the vehicle’s keys in the ignition, in the same outbuilding as the vehicle, or near your front door inside your home
- Be vigilant when using your vehicle for anyone taking an interest in it
- Have the vehicle’s windows etched with the vehicle identification number
- Review your home and business premises security – consider CCTV, gates etc.