After a spade of metal thefts across Northumberland I am pleased to back the Home Secretary's announcement last week that cash payments for scrap metal will be banned and penalties increased, as the Government steps up its action against metal theft.
In a statement to Parliament Theresa May said the Government would:
• create a new criminal offence to prohibit cash payments when purchasing scrap metal
• introduce unlimited penalties on those who break the law.
In November last year the Government announced that a dedicated metal theft taskforce would also be established. These changes are part of a wider plan to tackle all stages in the illegal trading of stolen scrap metal and further measures to crack down on rogue dealers will soon be outlined.
People across Tynedale are disgusted by metal thieves and the criminals who deal in stolen metal. We need to protect business, the public and our national heritage from metal theft and that’s why I’m pleased to back the Government’s action.
It’s right that the Government is stopping cash payments and introducing tough penalties to clamp down on the illegal metal trade.