Arrest in cable theft crackdown on Teesside

British Transport Police has arrested and bailed a 46-year-old Teesside man in connection with railway cable theft.

His arrest was made during a two-week operation which aimed to crack down on the crime in the Teesside area.

The man, from Stockton-on-Tees, was arrested on the railway line near Hartburn Junction in Morpeth on Wednesday night.

British Transport Police officers from across the country have been drafted in to work on the operation.

Copper price

Chf Insp David Oram, of British Transport Police, said about 200 people in the North East had been arrested in connection with cable theft within the last year.

"The price of copper on world markets continues to drive the demand for cable, which has resulted in an increase in the number of incidents of cable theft on the railway," he said.

"A number of cable thieves have been badly injured or burnt attempting to steal cable and it's only a matter of time before someone gets electrocuted or struck by a train and killed."

The man arrested has been released on police bail pending further enquiries.

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