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Eleven people arrested during Suffolk Police Safer Business Week, including in Bury St Edmunds and Ipswich





Eleven people were arrested during a police operation across the county last week.

Suffolk Police visited around 300 shops and businesses as part of Safer Business Week, which was aimed at raising awareness among traders on how to report crime.

Last Thursday, SuffolkNews joined a police team in Bury St Edmunds town centre as they met with shopkeepers to also promote the recently launched DAMS (Digital Asset Management System).

Eleven people were arrested as part of Safer Business Week. Picture: Suffolk Police
Eleven people were arrested as part of Safer Business Week. Picture: Suffolk Police

DAMS is an online system, which businesses can use to share CCTV footage with the police and officers said it would help ‘bridge the gap’ for traders to report crimes.

Sgt Joe Nettleton, Bury St Edmunds Community Policing Team, who was part of the Bury walkabout last Thursday, said: “We want to make sure that businesses are confident in reporting crime.

“Shop theft is not the most complex when it comes to investigating. We need CCTV and we need statements and then we have a good chance of fighting crime robustly.

SuffolkNews joined a police team in Bury St Edmunds town centre last Thursday. Picture: Martyna Wiecha
SuffolkNews joined a police team in Bury St Edmunds town centre last Thursday. Picture: Martyna Wiecha

“I’m hoping that once business owners become more aware of how to use DAMS, reporting crime will be easier and less overwhelming.”

As well as visits to businesses, five stop and searches were conducted, six vehicles were seized and 45 pieces of intelligence was gathered.

Among the people arrested was one individual who was found to be working illegally at a Bury St Edmunds barber shop and another was handed to immigration.

Officers met with shopkeepers to also promote the recently launched online reporting system. Picture: Martyna Wiecha
Officers met with shopkeepers to also promote the recently launched online reporting system. Picture: Martyna Wiecha

In Ipswich, two arrests were made for theft from a clothes store, while a vehicle stopped in London Road was found to contain counterfeit perfume.

Meanwhile, in East Suffolk, six separate premises were visited by the police and HMRC after information suggested illegal tobacco was being sold.

Inspector Dan Fiske said: “The week of activity was very well received and appreciated by shop staff who we engaged with.

Suffolk Police visited around 300 shopkeepers to raise awareness on how to report crime. Picture: Suffolk Police
Suffolk Police visited around 300 shopkeepers to raise awareness on how to report crime. Picture: Suffolk Police

“While this was a week of dedicated activity, it’s important to make clear we continue to work to tackle shoplifting and pursue and prosecute offenders where possible, including using preventative powers such the anti-social behaviour act to tackle persistent offenders, use of community protection notices and criminal behaviour orders.

“We would always urge victims of retail or business crime to report it.

“For example, shoplifting is a crime whatever the value of the item stolen and can result in a criminal conviction, which can have a serious impact on someone’s life.

“We understand this this behaviour is simply unacceptable as it ultimately can threaten the future of the business affected.

“By reporting you are not only allowing officers to investigate but also providing police with the information that can be used to map crimes and see emerging crime trends.

“This can then be used to support preventative action, including when giving advice and guidance to local retailers.”