“Motorcyclists should remain on high alert to prevent their machines being stolen by the gangs who are currently exploring the weaknesses in UK security on the run up to our departure from the EU,” says the UK’s most eminent bike crime expert, Dr Ken German.
While the country gets increasingly distracted by the machinations of changing a 40-year established set of protocols and inter-country police co-operation, it’s expected that bike thieves could accelerate their activity in an attempt to profit from the political confusion.
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“A warning from security minister Ben Wallace to law enforcement and security leaders suggests that the country's safety will soon be placed in jeopardy should we end up with no-deal Brexit,” says German.
The Police Federation – which represents 120,000 officers have accused the government of giving them no indication of how they are to protect the British public from exactly this sort of cross-border crime after our withdrawal on the 29th March next year.
“The fear of losing the ability to track terrorists and criminals is very serious, as is the exchange of data including criminal records,” continues German. “The posting and receiving of alerts on wanted suspects, DNA, fingerprints and airline passenger information, the tackling and cooperation on counter-terrorism, and cyber security and illegal migration is clearly a situation that no police service or authority from any EU country desires.”
The 3600-member-strong International Association of Auto Theft Investigators, which represent 71 countries throughout the world, are reportedly highly concerned that Britain could be isolated in this way. The organisation believes that this could see 20 years of advancement in dealing with vehicle crime and criminals compromised.
There’s little doubt that criminal gangs will be highly aware of the reduced focus at borders and ports, and will see it as a great opportunity to push the customs officials to breaking point.
"The motorcycle world could see a welcome and significant reduction in motorcycle and scooter theft in 2018 thanks to the dedicated work of both the police and motorcyclists themselves. But this period of uncertainty coincides with a time of year when the bike gangs are at their full strength and focused on our notably understrength police service whose attention is understandably elsewhere,” continues German.
For once, social media has led much of the fight-back against bike crime. “Social media has successfully advised, warned, discovered, assisted in recovery, and aided the police in identifying suspects and several times been instrumental in arrests and conviction of thieves,” notes German.
Motorcyclists should from now be on high alert over the winter against home and garage burglaries where many bikes are stored and vulnerable.