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Police hunt car used to steal diesel from Lichfield petrol stations

CCTV images of the silver Vauxhall Astra

CCTV images of the silver Vauxhall Astra

Police have released CCTV images of a car which they believe has been used to steal hundreds of pounds of fuel from petrol stations in the region.

The silver Vauxhall Astra was caught on camera at a garage in Lichfield where it was filled up with £112 of diesel before being driven away.

The images show the car being filled up by a woman – although it is believed most of the offences have been committed by a group of Asian men.

Officers say the thieves regularly switch the vehicle’s registration plates and are thought to have fitted extra tanks to enable more diesel to be stolen. The total value of the diesel taken in the Lichfield and Tamworth areas now totals nearly £700.

Since July 1, the car is thought to have been involved in nine diesel fuel thefts in Lichfield garages at Muckley Corner, London Road, and on the Chester Road in Stonnall. It also believed to have been used to take fuel at a supermarket in Bitterscote Drive, Tamworth, and has also been linked to six other offences in Codsall, Great Barr, Quinton and Wednesfield.

The car has been spotted with the registration number S61 CBA which was stolen from a Fiat car, in Willenhall on July 26.

PC Martin Ellerton of Trent Valley police said:

“We are keen to hear from anyone with information about who is behind this series of thefts which have happened at various times of the day and evening at filling stations across the region. If you, or someone you know, is offered cut price diesel fuel, or you hear of people selling fuel at discount prices, then I would urge you to get in touch with police.”

PC Ellerton said the thefts posed a significant safety hazard with diesel being pumped into makeshift tanks fitted in the boot or on the back seats.

He explained:

“There is a real risk of such thefts sparking a serious incident such as a fire or explosion which is why we need to trace the suspects and this silver Vauxhall Astra as quickly as possible.”

Anyone with information about the vehicle, the drivers or the thefts, is asked to contact PC Ellerton on 0300 123 44 55 or call Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

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