£700k of MoD kit stolen in 2010
11 April 2011
Around £700,000 worth of equipment was stolen from the Ministry of Defence between May 2010 and February 2011, according to official figures.
Items taken include a pistol, a £10,000 aircraft fuselage from RAF Kinloss, a £50,000 helicopter rotor tuner from Bicester, a £25,000 silver statuette from Knightsbridge barracks and £84,500 in compensation cheques.
The Ministry of Defence published details of every item stolen between 12 May 2010 and February 28 2011
worth over £100 following a Parliamentary question.
The figures show that £45,000 of night vision goggles were taken from HMS Ocean in June last year, £18,000 worth of telescopic sights from DE&S in Bristol in January this year, and £88,000 worth of night sights from Combermere Barracks, Windsor, in February.
Around £18,000 in cash was taken from Sulva Barracks, Hereford in October 2010 and three compensation cheques, totalling £84,500, were stolen from a non-MoD site in November.
Defence minister Andrew Robathan said the stolen cheques had not successfully been cashed.
"The cheques were for £60,000, £16,500 and £8,000. I can confirm that neither the intended recipients nor the MoD have suffered a financial loss as a consequence," he said.
Robathan also said that the "necessary resources" had been allocated to investigate the losses and recover the items where possible.
"The Ministry of Defence has recently set up a defence crime board to provide strategic direction and initiatives aimed at combating the harm done to defence by crime," he said.
Liverpool MP Luciana Berger, who requested the figures, said that the list proved that enough military equipment had been stolen to "launch a small coup".
"The list went on and on, and the one I asked for was restricted to those items worth more than £100, so it is likely that many other things were stolen. This list doesn't include military bases abroad, either. I will be laying down another question about that."
An MoD police spokesman said that arrests had been made in some instances and that the "full range" of service personnel, civil servants and civilians were involved in the thefts.
Thefts among the hundreds of thousands of individuals who visited military sites were "far less than for a similar-sized population in a UK town", the spokesman said.
"The MoD police ensures that all crime reported to it is fully investigated and over the last three years the level of theft it deals with has fallen by almost 20 per cent."