Innovative police work on show

Home Secretary visits West Yorkshire to talk about the work of the new National Crime Agency.

A Yorkshire police team which uses cutting edge technology to tackle serious and organised crime was visited by the Home Secretary today.

During her visit to West Yorkshire police operations support division in Wakefield, Theresa May saw automatic number plate recognition technology.

This crime-fighting tool allows officers to catch criminals by using cameras to scan car registration plates.

The Home Secretary also spoke to police officers, about how West Yorkshire’s ground breaking work in responding to serious crime will fit with the National Crime Agency (NCA).

Announced last week, the powerful new organisation will spearhead the UK’s fight against serious and organised crime, which costs the UK between £20 billion and £40 billion each year.

It will also strengthen policing at the border and ensure local policing effectively links to the work of national agencies and action overseas.

Home Secretary Theresa May said: ‘The impact of serious and organised crime is felt across the UK in the everyday lives of people and neighbourhoods.

‘UK policing will play a vital role in the new NCA and this division of West Yorkshire Police is an excellent example of how cutting edge technology can be used in the fight against serious and organised crime.

‘The NCA will work in partnership with the police, law enforcement agencies, businesses and the public to ensure those who commit serious and organised crime are tracked down, pursued and brought to justice and that their ill-gotten gains are stripped away.’

The agency will answer to the Home Secretary and will be made up of four distinct crime teams – organised crime, border policing, economic crime and the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre.

It will employ investigators, enforcement officers, intelligence analysts and technical, financial and operational specialists.

Trained officers will have police, customs and immigration powers and use the latest technology and tools to tackle criminal activity.

Subject to legislation, the agency willl start operating by December 2013.

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