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Police are warning Dunedin tradies to lock up their tools after 11 thefts in the last five days.
Acting Inspector Craig Dinnissen said the modus operandi for most of the thefts was the same, with offenders smashing windows in vans and stealing the tools inside, though tools had been stolen from building sites on two occasions.
It was part of an ongoing trend of similar offending in Dunedin and around New Zealand, Insp Dinnissen said.
He said the cost to victims was considerable, with the value of sets of tools between $4500 and $9000.
The thefts were taking place across the city.
Insp Dinnissen said tradies should either have tinted windows on their vehicles, make sure their tools were kept in locked boxes, or keep their vehicles parked off the street.