Jack Quann
Jack Quann

20.18 16 Apr 2019


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Police in the North have recovered an ATM that was stolen early this morning.

The incident happened in the Market Square at Bushmills in Co Antrim.

A digger was used to rip an ATM from the wall of a shop in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

It's the ninth such incident in the North so far this year.

Examinations are now being carried out following the recovery of the stolen cash machine.

PSNI Detective Chief Inspector Dunny McCubbin said: “I want to reassure the public that we continue to take this matter extremely seriously.

"I understand the fear that these attacks are causing, and the damage that is left in the wake of each theft.

"We are doing all we can to catch the people responsible and stop these attacks."

Detective Chief Inspector McCubbin also appealed for anyone with information to contact them.

He said: "Did you see a digger on a low loader being towed by a tractor on the roads in the area? Did you witness the attack just before 3.30am this morning?

"A telehandler was also used in the commission of this crime and I believe this was used to transport the ATM from the Diamond area of Bushmills."

ATM thefts

The Bushmills robbery was the latest in a series of cash machine thefts on both sides of the border since the start of the year.

Earlier this year, the PSNI established a special taskforce to deal with the thefts.

Its Organised Crime Branch were allocated a team of detectives to investigate the incidents.

Speaking in March, Detective Inspector Richard Thornton said: "Recently there has been an upsurge in the number of ATM machines ripped from the walls of commercial premises using plant machinery which, more often than not, has been stolen from a nearby farm or building site and then destroyed after each incident.

"The attacks tend to occur more frequently, but not exclusively, in rural areas, and are a serious cause for concern for us all.

"The idea that ATM thefts are a victimless crime should be completely discounted.

"These attacks cause untold loss and disruption to individuals, businesses and whole communities, in terms of the loss of very expensive machinery, delays in production, damage to the local economy and the likelihood of criminal finances being redirected back into funding further organised crime or terrorism.

"Local people who rely upon these banking facilities also suffer as they may have to travel considerable distances to find an alternative banking arrangements and the livelihoods of the business owners who have worked for years to build up their businesses is also jeopardised."

Main image: The scene in Market Square in Bushmills, Co Antrim, after a digger was used in an early-morning attack to rip a ATM from the wall of a shop. Picture by: Liam McBurney/PA Wire/PA Images
Additional reporting by Stephen McNeice

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