POLICE patrols along the A1 and A14 are to be stepped up after a spate of thefts from lorries parked in Huntingdonshire laybys and car parks.

Several lorries were found to have been broken into in the early hours of Wednesday November 7 and the curtains

POLICE patrols along the A1 and A14 are to be stepped up after a spate of thefts from lorries parked in Huntingdonshire laybys and car parks.

Several lorries were found to have been broken into in the early hours of Wednesday November 7 and the curtains slashed or padlocks damaged.

At the Brampton Hut Travel Inn car park, a lorry was targeted and its reinforced side curtains slashed. The lorry was searched but nothing was taken.

In St Peters Road at around 2.30am, a lorry was broken into. It is unknown if anything was taken.

On October 2 hair products and razor blades were taken from vehicles parked in Blackstone Road, Huntingdon. On October 12 cases of Benedictine brandy were stolen from a lorry parked in a layby at Godmanchester. Hair products were taken from a vehicle in Stukeley Meadows industrial estate on October 10. Kitchen hobs were taken from a layby in Ellington on October 23 and on October 30 boxes of curtains were taken from a vehicle parked at Hinchingbrooke Business Park.

Detective Inspector Trudie Skeels said extra patrols are taking place along the affected roads in an effort to deter thieves. "We have recently seen a slight increase in reported theft from lorries.

"The crimes take place when the drivers are asleep at night, parked up at either fuel stations or in laybys.

"We are increasing the number of officers on patrol in the area. However, lorry drivers need to ensure their vehicles are secure as they can make them and be vigilant.

"Incidents have been reported as happening in the area of St Peters Road Huntingdon, Brampton Hut Travel Inn car park, A1, and A14 laybys at Woolley and Catworth and Blackstone Road, Huntingdon.

"In some cases three of four men, all wearing balaclavas have approached the parked vehicles and slashed the curtains to gain access. Often the driver is not woken by this. They have then used a car to leave the scene."

A police pursuit took place on the evening of Wednesday November 7 after three men were seen acting suspiciously near to the Spittals roundabout in Huntingdon. Police had earlier received reports that a number of lorries were found with their curtains slashed. The men made off in a car and were pursued by police until the car came to a stop on the carriageway of the A14 near to Godmanchester. The men fled and the police helicopter and dog unit were called to assist. A 30-year-old man, a 32-year-old man and a 34-year-old man, all from Essex were arrested for conspiracy to steal. All were bailed to appear at Huntingdon Police Station in January. The pursuit lasted almost an hour and the A14 westbound carriageway at Godmanchester was closed while the abandoned vehicle was recovered.

INFORMATION: Anyone with any information about these thefts should contact DI Skeels at Wisbech Police Station on 0845 4564564 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.