Stolen lights could be used to grow cannabis

Ian Moore by his  Land Rover
Ian Moore by his Land Rover

A former police officer believes drug gangs may have stolen expensive lights from his new car - to grow cannabis.

Ian Moore, of Morley, woke up to discover the rear light clusters missing from his eight-month-old £55,000 Land Rover Discovery.

It follows a series of similar incidents across West Yorkshire which has led police to setting up a special task force to tackle the problem.

Police officially say the problem is linked to the trade in stolen parts.

But Mr Moore, 54, said he was told by investigating officers the powerful lights had another use.

“They told me they are a prime target for cannabis growers,” he said.

“When I started looking into it I found there are other cases up and down the country.”

“The thing is that it’s so easy for the thieves to get the lights out.”

The incident happened overnight on January 12.

Mr Moore has had to pay £400 to replace the lights.

Det Chief Insp Dave McDougal, of Leeds neighbourhood operations, said the trade in stolen parts was believed to be behind the majority of thefts.

He said: “We would urge the owners of Land Rover and Range Rover vehicles in the Leeds district to be aware of the issue and to be vigilant. The force is taking the issue seriously and has been running an operation specifically to target the theft of parts from such vehicles. That work has a seen a number of people arrested and stolen parts recovered. Officers are also working with manufacturers and using a range of tactics to target the thieves.”