More than 60 vehicles were stopped by police in Sussex last week as officers conducted a high-tech crackdown on road crime.
Police made use of Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras, which can spot offences like driving with no insurance, as well as intelligence for criminality such as drug-dealing or a wanted person.
Named Operation Street, the crackdown saw Sussex Police working alongside the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) and the DVLA.
Assistant Chief Constable Steve Barry said: “We were able to dedicate a number of resources to concentrate on road-related crime in Sussex.
"This varied from common traffic offences such as driving with no insurance or no tax, to more serious offences such as intelligence for drug-dealing or organised crime.
“We are committed to catching criminals and keeping people safe on our roads every single day, and anyone who compromises this will be dealt with robustly."
Officers pulled over 62 vehicles over the course of the operation, which ran from June 11 to June 15.
Of these, 17 were seized – one of which was associated with organised crime in Crawley, police said.
ACC Barry added: "Modern technology allows us to identify vehicles suspected to be involved in criminality, and if you fall into this category, it will only be a matter of time before the law catches up with you.
“We are delighted with how the operation went and we look forward to working with our partners again in the future.”
Operation Street had three main objectives:
- To target vehicles being driven illegally (no tax, insurance, etc);
- To target and deny criminals the use of the roads (for transporting weapons, drugs, etc);
- To prevent crimes from being committed in the first place.
Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said: “It is encouraging to see that a number of lawless drivers have already been penalised for offences including driving with no insurance or tax, as well as potentially dangerous vehicles being seized for using Sussex roads to further their criminality.
“It is particularly reassuring that Sussex Police have used ANPR technology to proactively stop criminals on our roads, recovering a stolen vehicle and seizing a vehicle known to be associated with organised crime in Crawley.
“This operation has clearly been successful and it should give Sussex residents confidence as well as an insight into how our police keep us all safe on the roads.
“These initiatives serve as a warning to those flouting the law and potentially putting lives at risk that they will be caught.
“Visible, proactive policing really matters, especially on our roads, and I will be working hard with Sussex Police to ensure that these positive results continue.”
Members of the public can submit reports of dangerous or antisocial driving via Operation Crackdown.