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Bereaved families highlight fears over scrapping of car crime unit

Bereaved families who lost relatives through car crime are to meet with police to raise concerns over the scrapping of a vital policing unit.

Members of Families Bereaved Through Car Crime (FBTCC) are due to speak with Assistant Chief Constable Alistair Finlay and Chief Superintendent Mark Hamilton about future of the Auto Crime Unit (ACU).

Last May the PSNI announced that all members of the ACU would be moved to other duties immediately. However, a decision was made to defer this until at least December 31.

But, as that deadline approaches, local organisations have been given little indication as to whether or not the ACU, which has dramatically lowered car crime in west Belfast, will remain.

Kevin Fitzpatrick of FBTCC said he was very concerned that joyriding and car theft-related crimes would dramatically increase if the the team was dissolved.

The ACU was established in 2003. Since then, the unit has made over 1,000 arrests and has recovered 700 cars.

Belfast Telegraph