April 2017 Newsletter & Conference Update

Our leader has kindly restricted his newsletter to 6 pages and included the itinerary for this May’s conference – IAATI Newsletter 042017

Vehicle theft is sadly making front-page news as I write. The weekend’s tragedy, the senseless death of Mr Sandwell, appears to have resulted from the determination of those intent on stealing his 66-plate Audi.

No specialist equipment appears to have been used to overcome the car’s security, just a blatant disregard for disturbing the occupants the home (likely to be in residence because his car was outside) to get the keys, quite possibly because the potential for confrontation was inconsequential to them.

Would you challenge someone willing to take your property, a criminal with no respect for the law or you, looking to cause inconvenience, distress and financial hardship? The fact is, many would for reasons that range from adrenaline-fuelled outrage to believing they have a duty to protect their property – on occasions, not being able to live with themselves if they did nothing.

Vehicle crime appears not to be a priority or ‘performance indicator’ for many. But to the victim it may well be their only brush with the criminal fraternity and devastating – they become a victim in so many more ways than simply losing their pride & joy.

Whilst such incidents are rare, vehicle theft is said to be on the rise. Our vehicles are of a higher average value than years ago, more drivers have access to finance facilities that are plentiful, enabling more kit-laden cars to be owned. In 2015, it was reported that ‘the number of car thefts is falling as the industry focuses on vehicle security’, the theft statistic had fallen to a 48 year low (full story – click here). Just last month, WhatCar reported ‘The days when you could break into a car with a coat hanger might be long gone, but car crime is on the rise again; figures released by the vehicle recovery experts at Tracker show that in 2016 there was a 10% year-on-year increase in the number of cars stolen’ (full story – click here).

In 2015, about 70,000 vehicles were stolen.  There being 8,760 hours in a year, that’s about 8 every hour, or one every 7.5 minutes. The 10% rise means, on average, another car was stolen every hour. Keys left in the ignition help opportunist thieves, sophisticated devices may relieve you of your high-spec’ drive but there remain those intent upon taking you car in brutal fashion, prepared to intimidate and assault without a second thought.  With the cash tied up in cars, their demand by the criminal fraternity for cloning to currency, is it any wonder that these valuable assets sat on display to the world are easily and frequently targeted … yet so little attention is paid to a crime that is so much more than the taking of an asset whose state-of-the-art security (likely more protected than a home) can be overcome by locating a small device; they key. Armed with the vehicle, the uninsured criminal possesses an unstoppable (by most) asset that will be use din other crime from swapping for cash, to the breaking up and selling on of components to the disguise & disposal to relieve another innocent party (another victim) of their hard-earned cash.

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