Police snare suspects with offer of free beer

Nineteen people suspected of committing crimes in Derbyshire have been arrested after being offered free beer by police as part of an undercover operation.
Nineteen people suspected of committing crimes in Derbyshire have been arrested after being offered free beer by police as part of an undercover operation.
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FREE beer was used to snare 19 suspected criminals when officers conned them into taking a delivery of a crate of ale and then arrested them on their doorsteps.

Officers sent letters to the homes of dozens of suspects - including some in Sheffield - who were wanted for offences including burglaries and robberies in a new crackdown on serious acquisitive crimes.

They targeted suspects who had evaded arrest for months and asked them to telephone a marketing company to arrange to take collection of a free crate of beer.

A total of 19 suspects fell for the hoax and called the number, which put them through to police officers based at Chesterfield Police Station.

A time and date was arranged for the crates of beer to be dropped off and, when the suspects answered their doors, they were arrested.

The sting was carried out as part of Operation Rocky, a month-long campaign targeting serious acquisitive crime across north Derbyshire.

Chief Inspector Graham McLaughlin said the operation had been a success.

He said: “These suspects are people who have managed to evade arrest for some time so we have used different tactics to find them.

“It has been very cost effective as it can take a lot of time and money to track people down.

“We use a variety of methods to arrest those suspected of committing criminal offences and we will continue to use new tactics when necessary.”

The suspects, from Sheffield, Chesterfield, Staveley, Alfreton, Ilkeston and Nottingham, were arrested on suspicion of offences including burglary, robbery and a serious sexual assault.