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“Significant amount” of police resources dedicated to tackling ULEZ vandalism, Met chief said

At least 510 Ulez cameras were stolen or vandalised between 1 April and the end of August this year, figures from the Metropolitan Police show.

The force is dedicating a “significant amount” of resources to tackling Ulez camera-related crime, Met Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley has said.

Two arrests have been made so far, with one person charged and released on bail and the other case discontinued.

Sir Mark told LBC there were “other investigations ongoing”.

The ultra-low emission charging zone was expanded on 29 August to include outer London, with cameras installed to enforce it.

Drivers must pay a charge of £12.50 per day to drive a non-compliant vehicle anywhere in the zone under the controversial clean-air plan.

The Met commissioner said of the figures: “Clearly this is quite serious damage it adds up to in terms of property and that is the basis [on which] we judge it.

“So it is getting, I guess, a significant amount of policing resources.”

The Met said that there have been approximately 160 reports of cameras being stolen and 350 being damaged.

The actual number of cameras affected may be higher as one report can represent multiple offences.

Asked what message the commissioner wants to send to those involved, he said: “We are investigating the crimes and we will go after you and we will find you.”

A Transport for London (TfL) spokesperson said last week that camera vandalism will not stop the Ulez operating London-wide and that “all vandalised cameras are replaced as soon as possible”.

“Criminal damage to Ulez cameras puts the perpetrators at risk of prosecution and life-changing injuries, while simultaneously risking the safety of the public.”

A spokesperson for Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “People are of course entitled to show their opposition to policies peacefully and lawfully. But causing criminal damage is never acceptable.”

A Met spokesperson said: “The Met has and continues to treat criminal activity in relation to Ulez seriously and has deployed considerable resources to our operation.

“We continue to monitor anti-Ulez protests, as we do for all potential public order matters, to consider if bespoke policing plans are required.”

(Source: BBC)

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