Stolen tools recovered by Laois Gardaí: a new warning has been issued after a recent rise in tool thefts
Tradespeople are being targeted by thieves in the past fortnight, with up to €10,000 worth of tools being lifted from vans under cover of darkness.
Beef up your home security, and beware a bargain, is the warning from Gardaí, after a recent rise in the number of thefts from vans in Laois and the midlands.
In the past fortnight alone, there has been at least 15 incidents of tools being stolen from vans, valued between €1,000 to €10,000, between Laois, Offaly and Westmeath.
The crimes are occurring mainly overnight, with tradespeople like carpenters, plumbers and fitters targeted.
"This is heartbreaking for a lad or lady trying to work," said Crime Prevention Officer for the Laois Offaly Division, Graham Kavanagh.
He advises on how to try stop the criminals.
"Secure your van, be vigilant and mark your tools. I would encourage all trades that carry tools about on a daily basis to look at their security arrangements on their vehicle, and at their home, to try mitigate against thieves stealing their tools and seriously impacting on their livelihood," he said.
To stop the cycle, the public is urged to report anyone selling secondhand items suspected as stolen.
"If the offer looks too good, then it probably involves stolen items," Gda Kavanagh said.