Over thirty cars broken into in just one night - over half Volkswagens

Many Chiswick residents woke up last Friday morning to discover that their car had been broken into. When they went to the police station they found the lobby area crowded with other residents reporting similar incidents.

The robberies appear to be concentrated in the Grove Park area with over 25 reported in the vicinity. Incidents also occured in Bedford Park on the same night. Over half of the cars attacked were Volkswagens. Normand Continental, the local Volkswagen dealer in Chiswick have confirmed an epidemic of robberies on VWs in recent weeks and police sources say that a similar rash of attacks has occured in Fulham.

Although there was a high number of break-ins the number of items stolen was limited with the thieves usually leaving low value items and taking items such as mobile phones and lap-top computers.

The thieves have developed methods of circumventing alarm systems particularly on VWs. A police spokesman said, "The entry method is almost always the same. Owners may wish to have other locks such as mortice locks fitted to protect their cars. Other than that they may wish to contact their local dealer to see if they have a solution to the alarm being bypassed."

He added, "although many vehicle crimes are the result of forced entry through windows and doors, a large proportion are the result of the car being left unlocked. Property is also frequently left on display, especially lap top computers and mobile phones. Remember to leave nothing of value in your vehicle, always lock it and set the alarm/immobiliser if you have one. If you have had your car radio stolen, consider replacing it with a removable one."

The police also urged Chiswick residents to report all crimes or criminal activity that they witness.

"It is apparent from discussions on the website forum that the identities of some criminals, involved in vehicle crime, are known to local residents. The crimes they are involved in are often not reported to the police and therefore action cannot be taken against them. Any resident who wishes to pass on information regarding suspects can do so by e-mail , by phoning the Sector Office at Chiswick on 020 8247 6415 or by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. A link to on line crime reporting is also available if this is more convenient for residents."

September 25, 2002


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