Cops after mailbox bandits

CASTLE Hill police put more officers on the street last week to target three crime categories — property offences, theft from cars and alcohol-related antisocial behaviour.

Leading Senior Constable Peter Papoutsis, of The Hills command, said nine extra police officers (seven plain-clothed) patrolled the Castle Hill, Baulkham Hills and Rouse Hill CBDs from 3pm on February 3 to look for suspicious activity.

Operation Flaky, which finished 3.30am the next day, also took officers into the Castle Hill industrial area, Baulkham Hills, Bella Vista and transport hubs in the city, including carparks. A focus of the operation was mail theft, Mr Papoutsis said.

This follows residential mail robberies, including the arrest of a man in early January, found with documents, identification and credit cards belonging to more than 70 people in Castle Hill, Baulkham Hills and Kenthurst.

The man, formerly of South Windsor, was charged with drug possession and two counts of goods in custody and appeared at Parramatta Court on January 8. He got conditional bail to reappear on February 19. Three Australia Post mailboxes were broken into last month on Jasper Road at Baulkham Hills, The Parkway at Beaumont Hills and Kleins Road at Northmead.

Operation Flaky was continued on February 2 and will be repeated. "I've spoken to our intel [intelligence] officers and all of the information shows these incidents occur on Sunday and Monday nights," he said.

On Monday, three unmarked cars were on the road and two plain-clothed officers patrolled on bikes. "We're looking at anyone and everyone, finding out why they're on our streets at night," said The Hills crime manager, Detective Inspector Gary Bailey.

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