Belfast Telegraph

Digger used in ATM robbery attempt

A digger was used to ram a shop in Co Tyrone in an attempt to steal a cash machine.

The property on Moore Street in Aughnacloy was targeted in an overnight attack.

PSNI detective inspector Hazel Reid said: "A digger was used to ram the premises on Moore Street at around 5am this morning.

"Enquiries are at a very early stage and the premises will be fully examined in daylight to establish the extent of the damage and if anything has been taken."

Detectives are investigating a possible link to a trailer located on the nearby Ravella Road. That road is currently closed.

Fermanagh and South Tyrone Assembly member Lord Morrow condemned the attempted theft.

"This is a worrying return to a crime which blighted rural parts of Fermanagh and Tyrone a few years ago," said the DUP representative.

"Whilst again on this occasion they did not manage to actually steal the ATM the community is left without a vital service. With the closure of many rural bank branches ATMs are the only way many people have to access their money. This particularly affects older and more vulnerable people who are less able to travel to access their money.

"It is vital that the police ensure that resources are placed into catching those responsible. If these attempts continue there is a danger that the companies who operate them will simply withdraw entirely from rural communities."

Ulster Unionist MLA Tom Elliott said the incident was an attack on the entire community.

"The Aughnacloy community are suffering enough at a time when they are faced with the closure of the last remaining bank in the town, last night's action just causes even more pressure and fears on local businesses," he said.

"These criminals have no place in our society, they just cause fear and disruption to the community."

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