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Last Updated: Saturday, 2 July, 2005, 10:53 GMT 11:53 UK
Water used to out-smart thieves
Training shoe treated with SmartWater
SmartWater shows up under ultra-violet light
Schools on South Tyneside are using water to tackle theft and vandalism.

The solution, SmartWater, is applied to valuable property, such as computers, or audio visual equipment.

It contains a DNA type code that can be read under ultra-violet light and used to identify where items come from, so they are less attractive to burglars.

Many thieves escape conviction because police are unable to identify the true owners of suspected stolen property found in their possession.

'Criminals in tears'

South Tyneside Council's community safety team has invested 62,000 in the scheme.

A property-marking programme is being carried out at all of the borough's 63 schools ahead of the summer holidays, when it is most likely that burglars will strike.

Insp Simon Charlton, of Northumbria Police, said: "This is a tremendous product, and will change the face of crime investigations across the borough.

"Every arrested person and each item of recovered property will be screened for Smart Water at the police station.

"It should bring tears to the eyes of criminals, as only the most stupid will consider breaking into schools from now on."

Smart Water scheme to be extended
21 Oct 04 |  Nottinghamshire

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