Police recover ATMs after theft bid in Ballymena

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By Michael McHugh, Press Association

Police have recovered two ATMs after they were removed from a supermarket in Ballymena.

Officers were alerted to the Larne Link Road theft at around 3am this morning.

A nearby police patrol responded and spotted the ATMs being driven away from the area on the back of a pick-up type vehicle.

They followed and subsequently located the vehicle abandoned on the Woodside Road.

(Photos - McAuley Multimedia Ltd)

A tractor and digger used to remove the cash machines were set alight at the supermarket.

PSNI Detective Chief Inspector David Henderson said: "The recovered ATMs will now be examined for any forensic evidence they might yield.

"On this occasion, the quick response of the police patrol was able to force the thieves to abandon their vehicles and the ATMs and they have fled empty-handed.

"It is likely that the digger and tractor involved were stolen, however no reports of such machinery being stolen have been received as yet."

It was the latest in a series of robberies targeting ATMs in Northern Ireland and the Republic.

The detective said: "I want to reassure the public that we continue to do everything that we can to try stop these attacks and catch those responsible.

"We have dedicated an increased the amount of resources to tackling this issue including actively patrolling ATM sites day and night.

"However, the reality is that these attacks are carried out across a wide geographical area and we cannot be present at every ATM location all of the time.

"We really need the public to help us and report anything suspicious, as a number of people did in Ballymena this morning."


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