South Yorkshire police team seizes 59 bikes in crackdown on crime

South Yorkshire Police's off-road bike team has been active
South Yorkshire Police's off-road bike team has been active

South Yorkshire Police's off-road bike team has seized 59 machines in a crackdown on theft and anti-social behaviour.

Since last August, the team has also arrested 14 riders, recovered 77 stolen bikes and issued 180 warning notices.

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Inspector Craig Clifton, of South Yorkshire Police's special operations unit, which deploys the off-road bike team, said: "Results from planned operations involving our bike teams are impressive in their own right and many residents will be reassured to see that we are literally stopping illegal riders in their tracks.

"Uninsured bikes are being taken away and crushed but our officers are not just dealing with the direct fallout from illegal motorcyclists. They have also recently apprehended suspects involved in alleged aggravated burglaries, recovered drugs and jewellery that is believed to have been stolen.

"The off-road bike team has also arrested a man on suspicion of 'cuckooing' in Sheffield, where criminals exploit vulnerable adults by occupying their homes and using properties to enable crime."

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He said because some offenders are using motorcycles to commit crime, the rapid deployment of police bikes is 'a key tool in the crime-fighting armoury''.

Insp Clifton added: "Our motorcycle team is proving extremely flexible in tackling crime and protecting our most vulnerable members of society. Not only are they putting a stop to riders whizzing through residential areas, their ability to cover lots of rough ground is proving valuable in searching for missing people who are at high risk of coming to harm.

"A few weeks’ ago the team found a woman in some woodland after she had been missing overnight. She looked to be suffering from the onset of hypothermia, so our intervention was timely."

Insp Clifton urged members of the public to report issues which affect their lives.

"We rely heavily on the public and our partners to guide our resources toward where they are needed most," he said

"It’s imperative that people continue to report issues affecting their quality of life, so we can continue to task our officers with tackling it."