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SWAGBAG: Praise as property reunited with rightful owners

By Herald Express  |  Posted: November 26, 2012

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SWAG Bag has had its first two successes.

The weekly Herald Express column works with South Devon police to help reunite burglary victims with their stolen items.

In the last fortnight, the owner of a stolen shotgun and the owner of a haul of stolen power tools have been traced.

Now Swag Bag has been praised by South Devon Detective Inspector Nick Wilden: "This new initiative is a brilliant collaboration between ourselves and the Herald Express.

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"I would like to thank the public for their vigilance. It's always really pleasing when we reunite people with their stolen property."

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Det Con Simon Sherwood, of Torbay police, said: "The owner of the tools is very happy. He instantly recognised the close-up photograph of a distinctive cloth roll of drill bits. He is an audio and visual engineer and he needs these tools for his job.

"They were stolen from his van in Torquay months ago and now he is coming in to look at other stolen property to try to identify it.

"That's why Swag Bag is so good. The public and the criminals and handlers are all reading it."

This week's photographs show some of the more distinctive items seized in police raids — including a large 1ft long lizard who police have nicknamed Larry.

They were recovered from a number of addresses searched by Torbay police after a male was arrested for house burglary.

DC Sherwood said: "The offender was identified by forensic evidence left at a burglary victim's house in Petrel Close, Torquay.

"We are now keen to identify the possible owners of the property."

The items include a collection of coins (pictured, top), a handbag with a pattern of little feet (left), Larry the large wooden carved lizard (bottom) and a black chest of hand tools, some possibly antique (below).

DC Sherwood is keen to speak to anyone who has had any of the following unusual items stolen: a Flexifoil sports kite, a pink Olympus camera in a black case or a large green metal jug made from the casing of war time explosive shells.

Read more from Torquay Herald Express

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