Addicts blamed for burglary spree

PUBLISHED: 03:08 07 December 2006 | UPDATED: 10:20 24 May 2010

OVER half the burglaries in Weston are committed by drug addicts who have been sent to the town. A new report has revealed that a staggering 57 per cent of house burglaries, 20 per cent of attacks on commercial premises and 14 per cent of drug deals are

OVER half the burglaries in Weston are committed by drug addicts who have been sent to the town.A new report has revealed that a staggering 57 per cent of house burglaries, 20 per cent of attacks on commercial premises and 14 per cent of drug deals are down to users living in Weston.The town's MP, John Penrose, is calling the findings 'explosive'. The report was published on Tuesday by the North Somerset Responsible Authorities Group.Mr Penrose said: "The problems the report exposes are even worse than we thought. "It reveals that up to 2,000 individuals from outside North Somerset may be coming to the area each year for access to drug/alcohol rehabilitation. Too many agencies are simply dumping addicts in Weston and then walking away. "When offenders relapse or commit crimes, they should be sent straight back to be dealt with by the courts in their own areas."Mr Penrose plans to meet Shadow Home Secretary David Davis MP to brief him on the report.He added: "It's not just the probation service. Health trusts and social services departments send addicts for treatment in Weston and too many are failing in their duty of care."There is some good news in this report. It contains evidence of slow but steady progress by our local services in dealing with Weston's drug problems, along the lines proposed by the Cleaner Weston Campaign."The report comes at a time when Avon and Somerset police has voiced concerns on future funding. Police Authority Chairman Dr Moira Hamlin said: "While the authority broadly welcomes the Government's provisional funding settlement for 2007/08, which will see an increase in the grant of 3.8 per cent, we remain concerned that in excess of £11m continues to be top-sliced from our funding entitlement."The announcement concerning the revision of our Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) targets for 2008 is of particular concern."It would reduce the number of PCSOs we expected to have by 195.

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