Initiative to shine a light on stolen items

Jacinta CantatoreHarvey-Waroona Reporter
Australind police officer-in-charge Sen. Sgt Mark Smith tests one of the UV markers.
Camera IconAustralind police officer-in-charge Sen. Sgt Mark Smith tests one of the UV markers. Credit: Jacinta Cantatore

Australind police have found a new way of returning stolen belongings to their rightful owners.

Officers at the station have been handing out permanent UV markers to residents and community groups.

The markers are being given away for free in a bid to reduce stolen goods being sold by thieves, and to help reunite stolen items with their owners.

People can use the pens to mark their valuables, such as laptop computers and power tools, in the permanent ink which is invisible to the eye, but shows up under a UV light.

“Certain types of property are really attractive to thieves,” Australind police Sen. Sgt Mark Smith said.

“Things that are easy to take, valuable, fun to own and easy to sell are always appealing to these types.”

Sen Sgt. Smith said by marking belongings with a driver’s licence number or phone number, it can make it harder for offenders to sell stolen property.

He said it would also help when police found stolen goods during a search warrant.

“It happens so often that we execute search warrants at a property and we find hundreds of items,” he said.

“We might be unable to find the owner of every item on those occasions.

“But if the items are marked, by using the UV light we can find the rightful owner.”

Sen. Sgt Smith said so far residents had jumped at the opportunity to mark their territory.

“People are really embracing the idea,” Sen. Sgt Smith said.

Officers will be taking the pens to local businesses, especially electronics and power tools outlets, to allow customers to mark their new items at the point of purchase.

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