1,200 Bromley homes benefit from innovative property marking system in drive to reduce burglary

PUBLISHED: 10:54 06 November 2015

PCSO Cat Bowman delivering a kit to residents

PCSO Cat Bowman delivering a kit to residents


The kits contain an invisible solution, allowing owners to mark their possessions with a unique forensic code and to display warning stickers to deter burglars

Over 1,200 homes in Bromley have had a free, innovative, forensic property marking system delivered to them so far as part of a drive to reduce burglary across the borough.

A team of specially trained officers from the Bromley MetTrace team have been delivering the free kits to residents, explaining and demonstrate the kits, whilst answering questions and providing crime prevention advice.

The kits contain an invisible property marking solution, allowing owners to mark their possessions with a unique forensic code and to display warning stickers to deter burglars.

This code can then be used by the police to trace the items should they ever be stolen and to link suspects to crime scenes.

Created by SmartWater, the solution, which is virtually impossible to remove and can only be viewed under UV light, has already been proven to significantly reduce burglary rates.

The MetTrace programme, in partnership with SmartWater, is part of a project that will see 440,000 London homes receive a free kit to protect their property.

Bromley borough commander Chris Hafford said: “The delivery of SmartWater kits will have a significant impact on burglary reduction and other crimes in the borough.

“We can’t make this SmartWater rollout a success without you, so when officers come to your home I would ask that you sign up and protect yourself and your neighbourhood.

“If you’re not at home we will put MetTrace cards through your door.

“Please don’t throw them away as they have our contact details so that we can visit at a time that’s convenient for you.”

Programme coordinator, Commander Simon Letchford, said: “Our pilot has proved the concept of forensic property marking works and we are delighted the technology will benefit 440,000 homes across London, which we estimate will prevent a further 7,000 properties from being burgled.

“The Met is committed to driving down burglary and is working hard every day to reduce offences, arrest offenders and support victims, using innovative technology to help us achieve this.

“We will use the kits as effectively as possible to create a hostile environment for burglars and to make our communities safer.”

Chief Executive and co-founder of SmartWater, Phil Cleary, said: “SmartWater has helped the police secure hundreds of convictions and has a proven track record in the criminal courts.

“Therefore the criminal fraternity know the risks of taking on SmartWater and this creates a powerful deterrent that benefits residential and business communities.

“We are delighted that this world-first project is now underway and we look forward to supporting the incredible work of the Metropolitan Police Service to reduce crime across the capital.”

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson said: “Since I’ve been mayor, crime has fallen in London and burglary is now at the lowest level since 1974.

“However we cannot be complacent and this new traceable liquid kit shows that once again the Met is at the forefront of innovation when it comes to preventing crime.

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