This is the moment a gang of brazen thieves steal more than £250,000 of building supplies during an audacious daytime robbery – over two days.
The men – wearing hi-vis jackets – were filmed loading granite paving slabs, quartz worktops, plant machinery, wood flooring and glass onto two lorries and a van.
They even stole the fork-lift trucks they used to load the stolen goods onto the lorries.
And despite the nature of the crime, none of the men are wearing masks and the registration plates of the vehicles are all clearly visible.
It has been claimed the crime will end up costing Weston Homes as much as £750,000 when costs and delays are taken into account
The robbery took place at the housebuilder’s depot on Fairfax Drive in Southend, Essex, over the weekend of July 8/9.
Weston Homes said they have been “deeply disappointed” with the response from Essex Police.
They have now decided to release a ‘Crimewatch-style’ video in an attempt to catch the thieves while offering a £20,000 reward.
Michael Alden, commercial director at Weston Homes, said: “This audacious robbery will eventually end up costing our company up to three quarters of a million pounds to a million pounds in losses once building delays, material reordering, time and legal costs are taken into account.
“We are deeply disappointed in the slow police response and their lack of resourcing to assist, hence we have decided to offer a reward to members of the general public, and also publicise the robbery via a video and social media.”
All three suspects filmed during the raid were white men.
One was wearing a hi-viz waistcoat, one was heavily built with a large tattoo over his left shoulder and the third suspect, who stole a forklift truck, was medium height in shorts, trainers and a baseball cap.
The vehicles involved were a MAN 7.5t lorry (MX06 NZJ) with Mercedes Lancaster Group on the side, a blue and red Volvo 26t lorry (AO02NMA) and a Ford Transit with trailer (UK04REP).
Essex Police has appealed for information following the robbery at the Weston Homes depot.
A statement said: “Police are investigating following a burglary at a business site off Fairfax Drive, Southend.
“It took place some time between Saturday, July 8 and Sunday, July 9. A number of high value items were taken.
“Anyone with any information is asked to contact Southend CID on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”
The force also defended its response to the robbery, saying crimes which present the “greatest risk of harm to the public” take priority.
A statement added: “Following the report of the burglary at a site in Fairfax Drive, a uniformed officer travelled from Southend to an address in Takeley to receive CCTV which was not fully available.
“The investigation has now been allocated to CID and enquiries are ongoing.
“It is one of nearly 150 incidents Southend CID is currently investigating, with many of them involving people who have been seriously injured.
“If anyone has any information about the burglary they are asked to contact Southend CID on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
“Burglary of business can cause significant financial loss and we take it extremely seriously, however the operational response to any incident is based on the threat, harm and risk posed to the public.
“Incidents which present the greatest level of immediate risk of harm to the public will always be treated as a priority.”
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