Police and MCN raid bike thief's house

Published: 09 July 2009

MCN has witnessed first hand how modern bike thieves operate after joining a police raid in a leafy, well-to-do suburb of a southern English town last week.  

You see them smashing doors down on telly, but for the real thing they knocked. Two coppers covered the back of the house; five waited at the front, all wearing stab vests or harnesses with cuffs and other scary stuff.

In the event, it was peaceful enough. The trader’s partner opened the door; he’d already gone to work. While two of the local police went to arrest him, the other five started the search. There’s no nice way to invade someone’s space, and with a daughter still asleep upstairs and five burly blokes hunting round the house the lady was white with shock. I tried not to notice the stone-flagged kitchen, granite island worktop and hand-built oak furniture – thieving obviously pays well. The guys gave her as much dignity as possible, and checked the garden first.

That was pretty nice too, with a flourishing brick-built greenhouse, comfortable summerhouse and badminton lawn. Too bad there were stolen bits mixed in with the kiddie bikes and barbecue equipment. And that’s before we looked in the garage.

The local coppers came back and told us their man wasn’t that surprised at being arrested, really. And that he was actually a nice guy. The hurt in his victims’ voices later that day told a different story. 

The moral for me? Lock your bike to something solid.

For the full story, see the July 8 issue of MCN.


Start of the raid - five policemen arrive at the handler's home and knock on the door, rather than kick it in.



Every inch of the workshop is searched for stolen parts and bikes.



The forensic team bag up all of the evidence to be used in court against the suspect.



The front and back ends of a Yamaha R6, all ready stripped and ready to be sold on.



The police find a bag full of indicators - further evidence that other bikes have been stripped down.



Yamaha R6 frame with number ground off. The part was found advertised for sale on the internet. 



The Yamaha R6's bodywork that was discovered by the police in the summerhouse.



Motorcycle frame found in the shed, right next to kiddie bicycles and other toys.