Wanted: British Transport Police releases 'Top 10 Gallery' of Sussex bike crime suspects

Suspects include man in cycling kit who left train apparently carrying someone else's folding bike

by Simon_MacMichael   January 26, 2012  

British Transport Police (BTP) has released a ‘Top 10 Gallery’ in connection with bike crime at railway stations in Sussex. In all, 13 people are shown in the images released, with some incidents involving two or more suspects.

The thefts in question all took place in November or December last year at Bexhill, Bognor Regis, Eastbourne, Haywards Heath, Horsham, Lewes, Shoreham and Worthing.

BTP regularly carries out appeals of this type in various parts of the country, and a spokesman told road.cc that such images, which are selected because they give a clear view of the suspect, have proved to be valuable in the past in helping clear up unsolved cases.

Of the ten images shown below, perhaps the most startling is the third one, which shows a passenger dressed for cycling who has just got off a train apparently carrying someone else’s folding bike, which looks like a Brompton. That jacket is an Altura Night Vision Evo, by the way.

Whether he boarded the train specifically with the intention of stealing a bike, or whether it was an opportunistic theft, is clearly impossible to say, but it does highlight the importance of securing your bike, however safe you think it may be.

Inspector Gary Ancell of BTP said: “To try and get names for these men and women we’ve followed multiple avenues of enquiry and circulated pictures to local neighbourhood policing teams, but to no avail so far.



“We’re now asking for help from members of the public to identify them. If you know any of these people and can tell us who they are, we want to hear from you.

“Unfortunately cycles are a popular target for thieves but there are several steps people can take to ensure their bikes are adequately marked and secured to help reduce the risk of becoming a victim of bike theft,” he added. 



“The best thing to remember is to register your bike and also to ensure a solid lock is used to secure it. If a bike is adequately marked, it makes it much easier to identify and therefore reduces its desirability to thieves.”

Anyone with information about the incidents in the pictures or who recognises those depicted is asked to contact BTP on Freefone 0800 40 50 40 quoting reference B12/LSA of 23/01/12, quoting the image number.

The pictures are shown below, together with a brief description of the circumstances of each incident from BTP.

Image 1 - Eastbourne

The man in image 1 is suspected of taking a cycle from Eastbourne rail station around 2.10pm on Friday, 9 December 2011. After taking the cycle, he loads it onto the back of his car before driving away.

Image 2 – West Worthing

Image 2 shows a man suspected of taking a cycle from the racks on platform 2 at West Worthing around 4.20pm on Thursday, 24 November 2011.

Image 3 – Haywards Heath

The man in image 3, dressed in full cycling gear, is suspected of taking another man’s folded cycle from the luggage racks on a Victoria to Hove service around 6.20pm on Friday, 9 December 2011. The man took the bike from the rack before leaving the train at Hayward’s Heath.

Images 4 and 5 – Bexhill

Images 4 and 5 show a man and woman officers want to speak to after an attempted cycle theft at Bexhill rail station around 7.40pm on Sunday, 4 December 2011.

The victim, a 17-year-old boy from Bexhill, had left his cycle secured to the racks in the car park, to the right of the station entrance.

Upon returning to the station later on he discovered that the bike’s chain and gears had been damaged, police believe possibly in an attempt to steal it.

Image 6 – Shoreham-by-Sea

This man, pictured in image 6, is suspected of stealing a cycle from Littlehampton rail station around 2.20pm on Friday, 16 December 2011.

Image 7 - Horsham

Officers want to speak to the three men (A, B and C) in image 7 after a cycle wheel and a separate cycle were stolen from Horsham rail station around 6.20pm on Friday, 16 December 2011.

Image 8 – Lewes

Can you identify the man pictured in image 8? Police want to speak to him after a cycle was taken from Lewes rail station around 4.15pm on Wednesday, 21 December 2011.

Image 9 – Bognor Regis

Officers want to identify the man in image 9 after a cycle was stolen from Bognor Regis station around 12.55pm on Thursday, 8 December 2011.

Image 10 - Worthing

The man and woman, pictured in image 10, are suspected of working together to steal a cycle from Worthing rail station around 9.35pm on Friday, 30 December 2011.


 

20 user comments

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As angry as this makes me I can't help laughing at number 3 chuckling to himself.

Could it be he's just picked up the wrong bike?

If not, what a cheeky b*stard!

TurboJoe

posted by TurboJoe [54 posts]
26th January 2012 - 13:50

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TurboJoe wrote:
As angry as this makes me I can't help laughing at number 3 chuckling to himself.

Could it be he's just picked up the wrong bike?

If not, what a cheeky b*stard!

I suppose it's a possibility. Friday in December - on his way home after work Christmas lunch perhaps?

Party

Thinking

Simon_MacMichael's picture

posted by Simon_MacMichael [7937 posts]
26th January 2012 - 13:55

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TurboJoe wrote:
As angry as this makes me I can't help laughing at number 3 chuckling to himself.

Could it be he's just picked up the wrong bike?

If not, what a cheeky b*stard!

Apparently, the sc*mbag didn't think to contact the police and return what he mistakenly took? I guess there were two folding bikes next to each other in the luggage rack? I hope the thief in photo 3 is a member on this site and as such I'd like to say this to him, "You are a f*cking useless sack of sh*t and I curse your existence, you parasite!"

Pepita rides again!

posted by pepita1 [175 posts]
26th January 2012 - 14:20

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Number 8 is David Beckham, musta fallen on hard times! Big Grin

Number 1 looks like my father-in-law! Surprise

(It isn't obviously...)

Number 3 looks very pleased with himself.

Ooooh, me legs...

posted by Oh heck... [46 posts]
26th January 2012 - 14:46

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Number 8 surely Joe Cole?

Number 2, ET.

7b Peter Andre and 7c Simon Pegg.

Isn't number 9 a woman?

And number 10, Chris Martin and Cher. What a horrible coupling.

dullard's picture

posted by dullard [140 posts]
26th January 2012 - 14:58

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Makes you think though - I think of bike thieves as being a bunch of teenage chavs, but no. 1 looks like someone's grandad, and no. 3 looks like someone you'd lend your tyre levers to if they were stuck when you were passing.

Bunch of cocksuckers.

Oh, and 7c looks like a reject from Dad's army.

Last night I would have considered trading a very loud baby for a really nice bike.

posted by notfastenough [2966 posts]
26th January 2012 - 15:12

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Number 3 is Hugh Bonneville.
Number 4 is Russell Kane.
Number 9 is Michael McIntyre.
Number 7a and 7b are identical twins.
And Number 2 is actually an alien from the planet Ratface Weasel or perhaps Weaselface Rat.
Glad I could be of help...
Thinking

gazpacho's picture

posted by gazpacho [80 posts]
26th January 2012 - 15:17

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Number 10 is Jason Orange and Catherine Tate

posted by Cervelo12 [78 posts]
26th January 2012 - 15:31

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The image 3 might well be practising the known technique which a friend experienced on the BTN-LWS route. person gets on train with donor bike knowing that this train has bike for which they have desire/pre-order (commuters being creatures of habit)

Dumps donor bike and takes bike of desire. This tale has a strange secondary effect. The following day the stolen bike reappears as a donor bike and another bike is taken from same train service.

In this case - I suspect a dress for the event (including Brompton luggage - or was this also stolen?) I would suspect that many London commuter services have a selection of Bromptons and some owners are still a bit naieve about security (could have had a nice machine from door vestibule grabbed just as doors closing at STP a couple of years ago)

40% of the bikes leaving WAT in the morning are Bromptons, and similar results elsewhere. On HDM-MYB 08.55 yesterday 4 Bromptons, on early trains HFN-FPK 4 Bromptons in one carriage at times (and train jammed solid with passengers).

Moral is do not leave bike out of sight - and watch at stations for removal.

47 years of breaking bikes and still they offer me a 10 year frame warranty!

A V Lowe's picture

posted by A V Lowe [471 posts]
26th January 2012 - 16:28

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holy shit! no5 looks alot like me albeit a few stone heavier and im a bloke!, an ugly one at that #fail

posted by russyparkin [579 posts]
26th January 2012 - 16:45

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Entirely possible he walked of with wrong bike, realised his error but

a) he is down his own bike if he returns the other one.
b) if he hands the bike in chances of BTP working with Sussex police and/or Southern lost property to re-unite him with his bike almost nil.

Really, though?

posted by workhard [358 posts]
26th January 2012 - 16:58

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A V Lowe wrote:
Dumps donor bike and takes bike of desire. This tale has a strange secondary effect. The following day the stolen bike reappears as a donor bike and another bike is taken from same train service.

Hang on - so people are just going round swapping everyone's bikes around? Doesn't seem to be much in it for the thief if they nick one each day but put it back the next so they can nick another...

A V Lowe wrote:
Moral is do not leave bike out of sight - and watch at stations for removal.

Totally agree - best not to leave anything out of sight on most busy trains if you can help it!

posted by step-hent [653 posts]
26th January 2012 - 17:00

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workhard wrote:
Entirely possible he walked of with wrong bike, realised his error but

a) he is down his own bike if he returns the other one.
b) if he hands the bike in chances of BTP working with Sussex police and/or Southern lost property to re-unite him with his bike almost nil.

So instead the original guy is down his bike. Not exactly fair, is it? I think if I walked off with someone else's bike I'd try to reunite them with it - and then sort out the fact that I left my own bike on the train without depriving them of theirs...

posted by step-hent [653 posts]
26th January 2012 - 17:04

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Bike thief or not, number 2 deserves our sympathy. Look at the state of his head. He's got that for life.

7c has gone for the camo look with a red hat, clearly planning to hide out in a field of poppies. His dress sense alone should be enough to bang him up for life.

posted by Mat Brett [1825 posts]
26th January 2012 - 18:35

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This whole episode show how useles CCVT is in detering or preventing crime.

It's goods that BTP are releasing these images in an attemp to catch some theives, but in doing so they are also admitting they don't actually monitored thier screens because if they did they could sent an officer to catch the criminals in the act.

Now just imagine that, proactive policemen!

posted by NickWi [9 posts]
26th January 2012 - 20:41

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Interestingly, I mostly see "WASPs" on the pictures, no "immigrants". So much for the argument that immigrants raise crime rates.

posted by Goodtwist [18 posts]
27th January 2012 - 9:48

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I wonder if the Brompton thief would be quite so pleased with himself had he known he was on Candid Camera?

OldRidgeback

posted by OldRidgeback [2132 posts]
27th January 2012 - 11:00

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WASP?
World Aquanaut Security Patrol- aka Stingray?! Confused

sloop

posted by sloop [22 posts]
27th January 2012 - 11:05

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sloop wrote:
WASP?
World Aquanaut Security Patrol- aka Stingray?! Confused

Nah, they're definitely THRUSH agents can spot 'em a mile off… okay maybe number 3 is SMERSCH (don't know what the individual letters in those acronyms actually stand for but they spell the same thing in my book* - bad people).

*The Boys own book of baddies

Darned if I do…

Mr Sock's picture

posted by Mr Sock [152 posts]
27th January 2012 - 11:39

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Lookalikeys apart, just a note about the value of these campaigns - BTP have told us that a couple of similar endeavours recently undertaken elsewhere in the country resulted in a 60 per cent clear-up rate.

That's not bad going.

Simon_MacMichael's picture

posted by Simon_MacMichael [7937 posts]
27th January 2012 - 13:46

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