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East Midlands cash machine raids: 'Possible links'

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Media captionThe Sapcote theft was captured on CCTV

The same gang could be responsible for a spate of thefts where cash machines were ripped from walls using heavy machinery such as diggers.

Police say there is a "strong possibility" the seven raids in Leicestershire, Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire are linked.

However, police have not formally linked the crimes and they are still being investigated by separate forces.

The first was on 1 October and the most recent was on 12 November.

Image copyright Other
Image caption The fourth theft in Leicestershire was in Sapcote on 12 November

A police spokeswoman for Leicestershire, where most of the thefts have happened, said: "We are not formally linking any of the incidents at the moment but it's pretty obvious that there are similarities between them.

"There is a strong possibility they are linked, but we are keeping an open mind."

Image copyright Ken Eggleston
Image caption A cash machine was stolen from the Co-operative in Bradgate Lane, Asfordby, on 7 November

The first theft of a cash machine in Leicestershire was at the Co-operative supermarket in Dog and Gun Lane, Whetstone, on 21 October.

A stolen telehandler - a vehicle used in agriculture and building sites to shift heavy loads - was used to rip a cash machine from a store on Main Street, Newbold Verdon, on 5 November.

In the third theft in the county, a JCB digger was used to extract a cash machine from the Co-operative in Bradgate Lane, Asfordby, on 7 November.

In the fourth theft in Leicestershire, a JCB digger was used to take a cash machine from the Co-operative in Sapcote on 12 November.

Image copyright @han95_x
Image caption A cash machine was stolen from the Co-operative in Sapcote, Leicestershire, on 12 November

The first theft in Lincolnshire was on 1 October, when a Bobcat digger was used to smash a cash machine from the wall of the Co-operative in Godsey Lane, Market Deeping.

The cash machine was left behind, but the contents were stolen.

The second theft in Lincolnshire was on 11 November, when a telehandler was used to steal a cash machine from the Co-operative in Station Road, Kirton.

Image copyright Andrew Bowell
Image caption The Co-operative cash machine was left behind in Market Deeping, but the contents were taken
Image copyright Andrew Bowell
Image caption A digger believed to have been used in the raid was abandoned at the scene

The theft in Northamptonshire was on 27 October, when a stolen JCB and 4x4 were used to steal a cash machine from a Budgens store in Ise Lodge, Kettering.

Anyone with information about the thefts should contact police

Image copyright @Zoeanker
Image caption The theft in Kettering caused severe structural damage

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