Video: Spot the common tricks used by pickpockets

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The tactics used by pickpockets and luggage thieves feature in a series of videos produced by the British Transport Police.

The clips will help people to spot common tricks used by thieves, including distractions, diversions and stealing while their victims are sleeping.

British Transport Police video still

British Transport Police video still

A nationwide operation to tackle pickpocketing was launched in June, after figures showed it thefts at stations rose by 16 per cent last year.

Ch Supt Paul Brogden, officer in charge of the operation, said: “Thefts on the rail network are very rarely opportunistic; they are committed by determined thieves whose sole intention is to steal from other passengers.

“While crime on the rail network is down for the ninth successive year, theft of passenger property has been a real challenge for us this year, particularly with the rise in thefts of smartphones and other high-tech devices.

“We’ll use a range of tactics to create a really difficult environment for criminals to operate within, including intelligence-led patrols by uniformed officers and plain-clothes theft squad detectives. Thieves operating on the rail network should know that they will be caught and dealt with, no matter where they are operating across Britain.”

To report a theft on the railway, call British Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40.