Criminals are being warned strong measures are being put in place to prevent cash in transit robberies this Christmas.
Deliveries of cash to banks and businesses tend to be more frequent at this time of year as people hit the shops to buy presents.
Lancashire Constabulary is working alongside the British Security Industry Association (BSIA), SaferCash and other partner agencies to prevent cash and valuable deliveries being targeted by criminals.
Officers will be using both high-visibility and covert patrols on the ground and in some cases will escort security vehicles as they carry out their normal deliveries.
A number of other tactics will be used to prevent these robberies, including overt and covert CCTV monitoring; patrol cars following cash-handling vehicles; plus all cash containers will include either Smartwater or a dye, which will be released when they are opened.
Detective Chief Inspector Tim Leeson, of Lancashire Constabulary’s Serious and Organised Crime Unit, said: “Previous successful operations in the run-up to Christmas, and indeed throughout the year, have meant that the number of cash in transit robberies committed in Lancashire is very low.
“However, these types of robberies often involve armed gangs who are prepared to use excessive levels of violence to secure large sums of money.
“This is not a victimless crime, with only the businesses suffering.
“Armed robberies can have a truly devastating effect on innocent victims.”
He added: “Lancashire Constabulary will be stepping up its fight against those criminals who seek to carry out robberies in the run up to the busy Christmas period.”