Power tool with tracking device leads Kent Police to £500,000 hoard of suspected stolen goods

Police searching for a power tool have stumbled across a £500,000 haul of suspected stolen goods - and plan to release an extensive list to the public to find the owners.

Officers at Kent Police followed a tracking device on the drill which led to the discovery and seizure of more than 1,000 suspected stolen items.

Among the recovered goods were four vehicles, a huge number of power tools, and six caravans suspected to have been stolen from locations including Bristol, Wales, Southampton, Staffordshire and Sussex.

A quad bike was suspected to have been stolen from Ashford in Kent.

Once the police force finishes cataloguing the suspected stolen items, officers face the difficult task of finding the goods' owners.

Police Sergeant Ross Haybourne said: "We hope to reunite as many of the items as we can with their rightful owners as soon as possible.

"Officers are in the process of cataloguing the suspected stolen items and a comprehensive list will be released to the public in due course.

"Anyone wishing to claim items listed will need to provide proof of ownership or proof of purchase.

"We anticipate this to take a considerable amount of time and thank the public in advance for their patience while we undertake the task."

The find came about after police received a report of a theft of a drill.

The victim had been repeatedly targeted by thieves in the past, so began attaching trackers to their tools, police said.

Officers from Kent Police's Rural Task Force executed a warrant, assisted by colleagues from Thames Valley Police, at an address in Swattenden, near Cranbrook, Kent, just after 7.30am on 26 April.

Five local men, aged 18 to 44, were arrested alongside a 19-year-old woman and a 17-year-old boy on suspicion of multiple offences relating to theft.

They have since been bailed pending further investigations.

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Sgt Haybourne added: "Any tradespeople or those in possession of power tools are advised to mark their property, take photographs, and record serial numbers so that, in the event of theft, officers have more chance of returning property.

"We also advise reporting any thefts in a timely manner, providing as much detail as possible."