Norfolk police carried out a series of raids in a bid to crackdown on a recent rise in burglaries in the Breckland district.

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As part of Operation Octane, police officers executed six search warrants yesterday, targeting known criminals at their home addresses.

It was the third day of action which was aimed at reducing the recent rise in burglaries at commercial properties across the area.

The first raid took place in Thetford at about 8am yesterday.

Two Thetford police riot vans and two squad cars, complete with sniffer dog, descended on Bidwell Court in St Nicholas Street.

The suspect was not home.

Norfolk’s chief constable said: “We get mixed results from search warrants but it does send a very strong message that if you are dealing in drugs or causing problems in your local communities you will expect some attention from us.

“This is the hard end of enforcement, we actually do a lot in terms of trying to prevent crimes as well, partnerships with young people, trying to cut off the supply of new criminals as well.

“It’s trying to be intelligent with our resources, we’ve got less officers than we had when I started three years ago, we’re 150 officers fewer, so we’ve got to be selective in terms of targeting those resources.”

Despite stretched resources, however, Mr Gormley said they have already seen in a significant reduction in priority crimes, such as burglary, which impact people’s lives.

“The proof of the pudding is the crime figures this year which so far have seen a 17pc reduction,” he said.

Mr Gormley also urged members of the public to get in touch.

He added: “If people have got concerns about any form of crime in their locality or anywhere in the county, if they report it to us we will assess it and act on it.

“They can report in anonymously through Crimestoppers or phone 101 or report it to their local station. We do want to know. In a county like Norfolk when you’ve got few officers for a very big, sparsely populated county, we absolutely rely on people coming forward, and we’re lucky in Norfolk in that we do generally get that.”

Elsewhere in Thetford yesterday, a man’s body was discovered on land near Thetford Golf Club.

The body of a man in his 30s was found near the Brandon Road site by a member of public at about 8.30am.

There are not thought to be any suspicious circumstances surrounding his death.

The next of kin have been informed and a file will be compiled and sent to the coroner.

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