“Opportunistic” criminals alert

Gardai have issued a warning about ‘opportunistic’ criminals who roam housing estates targetting vacant houses.

Gardai have issued a warning about ‘opportunistic’ criminals who roam housing estates targetting vacant houses.

Following a raid on a house in Auburn Park,Clonmel recently, which was foiled by alert neighbours,Inspector Kevin Bowen called on householders to take steps to ensure opportunities for criminals were restricted.

“These criminals are looking for the tell tale signs that the house is vacant.They are experts at identifying houses because they go on fact finding missions checking to see if there is anybody home, if post has accumulated, if there are no cars in the driveway and if the lights are off,” said Inspector Bowen.

He appealed to the public not to provide criminals with opportunities.

Inspector Bowen said criminals availed of every opportunity.In a lot of cases the criminals task was made easier because high hedges provided a screen for them and people had neglected to lock their garden sheds which allowed criminals access to the tools that they needed to break into the house.

“They are roaming estates looking for the weakest point “ said Inspector Bowen.

Inspector Bowen said that the Auburn Park raid by four people who targeted a vacant house was foiled by alert neighbours and he called on people to watch out for their neighbours property.

“Neighbours have an important role to play and need to be very, very vigilant,” insisted Inspector Bowen.

“We can cut down on the amount of opportunities available to the criminals by taking effective crime prevention measures,” said Inspector Bowen.

He called on the public to study the guidelines to ensuring property was protected at the gardai website and if access to the internet was not available he urged people to ring the gardai for assistance.