Criminals travelling across the border between Cheshire and Greater Manchester were greeted with more than a surprise today, Thursday 26thÂ June, as officers from Cheshire Police and Greater Manchester Police (GMP) took part in Operation Crossbow.
The overall aim of the joint operation was to disrupt illegal activity between the two counties and deny criminals the use of the roads
By using Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras officers were able to monitor virtually every vehicle that crossed between the two counties, stopping all vehicles that were on the roads illegally or were linked to criminal activity.
Cheshire Police Assistant Chief Constable Mark Roberts said: “We know that criminals donâ€²t simply stop when they reach the border, and we also know that there is as strong link between illegal vehicles and other types of serious crime.
“Uninsured drivers are more likely to commit other offences and many of their vehicles are unroadworthy and pose as real danger to other road users.
“Using technology, such as ANPR cameras, we are able to use the intelligence available to us to identify offenders and bring them to justice.”
Greater Manchester Police Inspector Matt Bailey-Smith said: “We will not allow the safety of our roads to be compromised by criminals and operations like today will help us achieve our overall aim of keeping criminals off our roads.
“However, offenders across Cheshire and Greater Manchester can be assured that this is not a one-off operation. Our officers patrol the roads 365 days a year and will continue to target criminals.”
Operation Crossbow involved more than 200 officers from Cheshire Police and GMP, as well as staff from partner agencies such as the UK Border Agency, Department of Work and Pensions, Her Majesties Revenue and Customs and the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency.
ANPR cameras are able to monitor more than 3000 number plates every hour and alert officers if a vehicle is linked to known criminals. The cameras also inform officers whether or not the vehicle is taxed & insured.
Both Cheshire Police and Greater Manchester Police are keen to remind members of the public that they too can help make our roads safer by reporting illegal use of vehicles to the police on 101. Alternatively information can be reported anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.