More than 100 bikes believed to be stolen have been seized as part of an operation launched after stolen bicycles were found advertised for sale online.
Officers from the Central East BCU executed a warrant at an address in Hackney on the morning of Sunday, 2 August and found a total of 118 bicycles with an estimated worth of more than £30k.
Officers are working to establish how many of them are stolen, and hope to reunite as many of them as possible with their rightful owners.
Two men aged 21 and 60 were arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods, and possession of criminal property. They have both been bailed to return on a date in August
An investigation was launched and the warrant arranged after 11 people reported finding bikes that had been stolen from them being advertised for sale on social media.
Sergeant Jo Stephens said: “This was a significant seizure of bicycles we strongly believe have been stolen – either in burglaries, robberies, or from the street – for the purpose of selling on for a profit to unsuspecting buyers.
“While the internet is a good place to easily advertise and sell property, the informal nature of the transaction means that people also use it certain websites to sell stolen goods quickly and anonymously, with little trace.”
Sergeant Stephens added: “We are making enquiries to try and find out who the bikes belong to so we can return them to their owners.
“We would urge anyone who has a bicycle to get it security-marked and registered at BikeRegister – this helps us return stolen property to its owner, and it also helps us bring prosecutions.
“Local Safer Neighbourhood Team officers across London offer this bike-marking service, and hold regular bike-marking events in high footfall areas – in towns, and near transport hubs.”
To find out how you can secure your bike, visithttps://www.met.police.
+ If you have had your bicycle stolen in Hackney or Tower Hamlets in the past six months and you want to find out whether it is one of the bikes seized by police, email CE-MiST@met.police.uk with as much information as possible about the bike – make, model, colour and/or serial number, and a picture if available.