Posted: Tue 27th Feb 2024

Flintshire hit by spree of Mercedes van thefts, charity suffers major setback

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales

A charity has been left in a dire situation, unable to deliver emergency food aid to the community, following the theft of two vans from the Hawarden industrial park area.

Flintshire Police have now issued a warning following the theft of six Mercedes Sprinter vans in a series of incidents over the past month.

On February 9th, three vans were stolen from Northop Road in Flint Mountain, Beaconsfield Road in Shotton, and Aber Road in Flint.

The criminal activity continued on February 17th, with another van taken from a compound on High Street in Saltney around 10.30 pm.

The most recent thefts occurred on the evening of February 25th, when two vans, crucial to the operations of a local charity, were stolen from a compound at Clwyd Close, just off Manor Lane, Hawarden at around 9.30 pm.

These vans, a 313 model with a Thermo King unit and a 314 model with a GAH unit, played a vital role in delivering food parcels to those in need across Wrexham and Flintshire.

A spokesperson for the charity, Given to Shine, detailed the impact of the theft, stating, “We’d literally just had one back from Mercedes days before, after spending just shy of £3,000 on engine repairs; it took us over a year to raise this money to get this van running again.”

The loss of both vehicles, which were awaiting additional repairs at the time of theft, has severely hampered the charity’s ability to serve the community.

In response to the increasing thefts, Design Out Crime Officer Kelsey Reed has issued a warning to van owners in Flintshire to enhance their vehicle’s security.

“We are warning van owners to check the security of their vehicles following an increase in thefts from the Flintshire area.

“Our enquiries into these reports are ongoing. We advise all van owners, and particularly those who own Mercedes Sprinter vans, to consider taking extra steps to safeguard their vehicles.

“We would recommend purchasing a steering wheel lock with Secured by Design accreditation, which means the item has been tested against known methods of theft.

“Alternatively, you could consider a pedal box, which is a device that goes over the pedals and locks in place, preventing anyone from driving away.

“Investing in either of these devices would make it very difficult for a van to be stolen.”

Anyone with information that could assist in our investigations is asked to contact us, quoting reference number Q027465.

Information about vehicle security can be found here.

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