Met Police Launches DNA Tagging Spray Against Moped Crime
The Metropolitan Police have deployed a new DNA Tagging Spray as an innovative strategy to deal with the ongoing problem of moped theft, robberies, acid attacks and the anti-social riding of powered two-wheel vehicles.
The same spray technology has led to multiple convictions following its use by other police forces.
At a briefing in London today (31st October) led by Met Commissioner Cressida Dick, it was revealed that the SelectaDNA Tagging Spray is among the latest tactics being rolled out by The Met to tackle an increasingly serious crime wave. The SelectaDNA spray is invisible to the naked eye but when exposed to special Police lights illuminates and allows officers to identify offenders and seize their bikes.
Det Supt Stuart Ryan, who heads the Met’s anti-moped crime operation, explained that the new tagging spray “gives us a chance to track offenders in a different way.”
There has been a staggering increase in the number of moped crime offences carried out in the Capital in the last year. In the 12 months to the end of June 2017, the Met logged 16,158 crimes involving powered-two-wheel vehicles compared with 5,145 the year before.
Police say the average age of moped offenders in the capital is just 15 and they typically use stolen motor bikes and scooters to commit other crimes, averaging 54 crimes a day in London.
However, moped crime is not just a London problem, and other forces have already been using the proven DNA spray technology including West Midlands Police, Cheshire Constabulary, Merseyside Police, Surrey Police and West Yorkshire Police.
Following West Yorkshire Police’s first use of the high tech ‘tagging’ spray, teenager Connor Walker was recently convicted. Walker, 18, was identified, arrested and charged with two offences of dangerous driving and driving without a licence. Walker, and the vehicle he was riding, were marked with the spray, indisputably linking him to the offence he committed. He was later arrested at his home and officers found a tagging agent on his hand and clothing matching the canister he was sprayed from, proving he was on the vehicle.
Merseyside Police have previously secured two convictions for anti-social behaviour and dangerous driving using the same SelectaDNA spray technology.
Police officers are now warning riders they have the tools to indisputably link them to the mopeds and motorbikes they offend on after using the DNA spray.
Once the offender has come into contact with the spray solution, officers can later carry out follow up visits to known suspects’ home addresses to detect the unique DNA code on the offender, and their clothing. Where there is evidence of SelectaDNA, the suspect will be arrested and marked items will be seized.
James Brown, MD of Selectamark, the security company which produces the SelectaDNA Tagging Spray, said: "We are constantly evolving the use of our synthetic DNA to assist Police in the fight against crime. This is a great example of how our innovative technology is helping police forces, including The Met, to catch criminals and remove anti-social offenders and dangerous drivers from our streets. It only takes a tiny drop of DNA spray to tag and identify an offender and this tactic will undoubtedly lead to more seizures and prosecutions.”
About SelectaDNA Tagging Spray:
The SelectaDNA Tagging Spray is used to deter and prevent personal attack and criminal behaviour, such as moped and motorcycle enabled crimes. It can be aimed by officers at suspected illegal and anti-social scrambler bikes, as well as at mopeds and motorbikes involved in other crimes such as robberies, assaults and smash and grab raids. The DNA tagging spray marks the bikes, clothing and skin of any riders and passengers with a uniquely-coded but invisible DNA that will provide forensic evidence to link them to a specific crime. More information: www.selectadna.co.uk/dna-tagging-spray
SelectaDNA the global leader in forensic marking offers a full range of property, infrastructure and offender marking solutions, using a completely secure and unique synthetic DNA technology. SelectaDNA has been proven to reduce theft and burglaries by up to 83%. SelectaDNA not only reduces crime but also enables Police to link criminals to crime scenes and secure convictions. SelectaDNA is available in a number of formats including a solution to permanently mark valuable assets such as electronic equipment, tools, plant and machinery, and an intruder spray to deter commercial burglaries and robberies.
For further information and images contact: Angela Singleton, Press Officer for Selectamark.
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