(Black Press file photo)

Pawn shop reporting software helping Surrey RCMP crack down on property crime

Since March 1, police say ‘RAPID’ technology has helped identify 17 suspects, led to two men being charged

Surrey RCMP say a new technology is helping them solve property crimes.

Electronic reporting software for pawn and second hand stores was implemented on March 1 that, according to a release, has led to the identification of 17 break-and-enter suspects from Surrey, Mission, Delta, Vancouver, Burnaby and Langley.

Surrey RCMP say they’ve also recovered stolen property that is worth more than $21,000.

Two recent arrests also came as a direct result of the new electronic reporting, police say, after investigators received information that helped them track down stolen property and identify two persons of interest.

Two men were arrested by Surrey RCMP’s Property Crime Target Team on April 17 in connection with four Surrey break-and-enters that happened this year.

Charanjiit Sahota, 32, has been charged with four counts of break-and-enter, three counts of trafficking stolen property and four counts of possession of stolen property.

Baldeep Gill, 29, has been charged with two counts of break-and-enter and one count of possession of stolen property.

Police say the new technology that aided them in the arrests was made possible by the City of Surrey when on Jan. 1, it “modernized” the Secondhand Dealers and Pawnbrokers By-law to include electronic reporting.

“The bylaw, which has existed since 1997, requires pawnbrokers and scrap metal dealers to report all property they intake to police,” an RCMP release states. “The newly adopted electronic reporting has been designed for automated comparison with information entered in the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC). This has streamlined the process for investigators allowing Surrey RCMP to more efficiently track stolen property.”

Surrey’s Manager of Public Safety Operations Jas Rehal said the RAPID technology (which stands for Regional Automated Property Information Database) provides police with “real time information to help assist them in their investigations.”

“This is another example of the strong partnership between the Surrey RCMP and City of Surrey Bylaw Enforcement that are leading to positive results for our community,” added Rehal.

Surrey RCMP Superintendent Shawn Gill said working with bylaw partners and utilizing the technology “is helping us deter and curtail property crime in the community.”

“Residents can help us continue to have reductions in property crime by recording the serial numbers or identification markings of their valuable items whenever possible,” said Gill. “This will allow us to potentially track these items should they become lost or stolen.”

Visit bc.rcmp-grc.gc.ca for more information on how to protect yourself against property crime.

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