Rising burglaries and theft is a concern for the community and police adopts a number of strategies to prevent them.

One such strategy is preventing the sale of stolen items back into the market or at least eliminating the ease with which stolen-items find their way back into the open market.

Indeed, many experts argue that reselling of stolen-goods back in the market is fast becoming a prime driver of not only petty crimes like burglaries and theft but also of serious crimes like robberies and assaults.

Lately, there is a growing perception that the reselling of stolen cigarettes back in the market is instigating serious crimes like violent assaults and robberies.

Therefore police are always concerned and alert to prevent any easy pathway of stolen-goods back into the market.

In the endeavour, Counties Manukau South Police Inspector, Tony Wakelin is making an appeal to the community either record serial numbers or engrave on their expensive properties.

Speaking to the Indian Weekender, Inspector Wakelin said, “One of our biggest frustrations is that at times we believe the property has been stolen; however, we are unable to return the expensive items to owners as serial numbers are not recorded or the property is not engraved.”

Checks on second-hand dealers in South Auckland

Recently, Inspector Wakelin has led an operation of Counties Manukau South Police, whereby checking on local second-hand dealers in their area which covers premises from Takanini to Pukekohe.

“Our staff reported finding shelves full of expensive Property including near new Television sets and Industrial tools that potentially may be stolen items.

“Only a very small number of victims of burglary or theft record their serial numbers or engrave their valuable property,” Inspector Wakelin said.

Second-hand dealers are a legitimate business

Dispelling any myth about the legitimacy of businesses dealing in second-hand goods lawfully, Inspector Wakelin acknowledged, “Second-hand dealers are licensed under The Second-hand Dealers and Pawnbrokers Act 2004.

The Act requires the Dealer to obtain identification from the seller and to retain the goods for a period of 14 days before it can be on-sold.

Police staff may carry out an inspection of the goods and books at any time to ensure the property is not stolen.

The SNAP initiative

Inspector Wakelin reminded the community about the SNAP initiative – a joint initiative of the New Zealand Police to prevent Burglary and to make it harder for criminals to sell goods.

SNAP is a free online asset where one can sign up and record details of their valuable items including serial numbers and photographs.

“Only you can access this information. If you are a victim of a Burglary you can access the site and provide identification details of items stolen to Police,” Inspector Wakelin.

“This will help Police apprehend the offenders and return the items to you,” Inspector Wakelin said.

SNAP can be accessed at www.snap.org.nz

Additionally, attractive items like business tools should be engraved with identifying marks such as your driver’s license number to enable Police to return the items to you.

Further prevention advice can be obtained from your local Police or the police website www.police.govt.nz