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Police hunt metal thieves targeting copper pipes and water tanks in Southampton.
Police in Southampton are investigating after a number of burglaries where copper piping or copper hot water tanks have been stolen from properties.
In all the known cases the thieves have struck at homes that are empty or being refurbished. If the hot water system is connected this has sometime caused extensive water damage.
There have been 8 known cases since November last year in the Shirley area.
It’s thought the properties are being targeted so that the copper can be taken and sold for scrap as the price for scrap metal is currently high.
Officers are appealing for any information about the thefts and also asking people who live near empty homes or those undergoing refurbishment to look out for unexpected workmen and people being there are unexpected times. If they are concerned they are advised to first of all try and contact the owner of the property and if there are still concerns, particularly if the people appear to be working at night, to report such incidents to the police.
It’s not known if any of the cases are connected.
A man has been charged over two cases and is next due to appear before Southampton Magistrates Court on March 26.
Anyone with information about the crimes is asked to contact Detective Constable Sam Wilson at Shirley CID on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.