Thousands of fuel thefts from petrol stations in Derbyshire are going unpunished, we can reveal.
A Freedom of Information request to Derbyshire police has revealed that only 211 charges have been brought from 4,012 ‘drive offs’ in the last 10 years.
The figures show that there were 255 fuel thefts from garages in Derbyshire this year up until September, but only two charges.
Detective Chief Superintendent Mark Knibbs, said: “The theft of fuel is a clear illustration of the dilemmas facing police forces in making decisions on where we place our limited resources.
“This type of crime is wholly preventable if stores adopted a pre-payment model for customers purchasing their fuel; something that’s been implemented successfully at many petrol stations in the county.
“As a force, we will continue to focus our resources on protecting vulnerable victims and on tackling the most serious criminality.
“However, on occasions where a criminal investigation is necessary and proportionate, then we can and will prosecute people in relation to the theft of fuel.”
A full breakdown of the statistics show:
- 2008: 591 drive offs, 27 charges
- 2009: 450 drive offs, 25 charges
- 2010: 528 drive offs, 25 charges
- 2011: 435 drive offs, 43 charges
- 2012: 191 drive offs, 12 charges
- 2013: 171 drive offs, 10 charges
- 2014: 303 drive offs, 27 charges
- 2015: 282 drive offs, 14 charges
- 2016: 394 drive offs, 14 charges
- 2017: 412 drive offs, 12 charges
- 2018 (up until September 7): 255 drive offs, two charges
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