Tests detect illegal fuel in Norfolk

Drivers using illegal fuel are being targeted by Norfolk Police in a bid to clampdown on thefts.

More than half of the force's response vehicles have been given roadside fuel testing kits so officers can test fuel as part of a routine stop check.

The kits can identify red diesel and heating oil, which police say have become a popular target for thieves as fuel costs rise.

Offenders will face financial penalties and may have their vehicles crushed.

'Quickly test vehicles'

The kits have been created in consultation with the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) road fuel testing unit.

Det Sgt Pete Jessop, of Norfolk Police, said: "The kits will give more officers the ability to quickly test vehicles suspected of using illegal fuel during routine stop checks.

"Most of us pay for fuel at the pumps, and with prices at a premium we are all victims when others try to use fuel that is either stolen or has less duty paid on it."

Maddy Ratnett, from HMRC, said: "Those who use rebated fuels illegally are abusing a tax system, which is there to support and reduce the burden on UK industries such as agriculture.

"It isn't about cheating the government out of a few pounds, it's about depriving our public services of vital funding.

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