A thief dressed as a builder managed to steal a three tonne, £25,000 digger in broad daylight.
CCTV recordings from a nearby building show the thief, dressed in high vis trousers and jacket, and an accomplice taking the Takeuchi mini excavator from a secure lockup in Wolverhampton.
Stone Utilities was carrying out roadworks nearby. The thief even made his incredibly slow getaway right past the hole that the digger was meant to repair.
According to Stone Utilities Operations Manager Mick Aitken, “the whole thing was organised.”
"It is very frustrating hearing what has gone on here.
"And I'm afraid this has happened to us a few times now.
"We lost a three-tonne dumper in Wolverhampton a few weeks back.
"It is the same each time - men turning up with fluorescent clothes, playing the part of workmen, but then stealing.
"I don't know if this digger was for order - but the whole thing was organised."
The two men arrived in a white van with flashing lights, then quickly broke into the carpark of Turley’s Office Furniture. Both dressed as workmen, they had no trouble getting the key to the lockup from staff.
“No one passing thought anything of it,” said Store Owner Philip Turley.
The cameras recorded the man driving for around 50 yards, but lost sight of him after he made a right hand turn. Without the digger, work on the site has completely stalled.
"I can confirm that we are investigating the theft of a digger from a yard on Newhampton Road West, Witmore Reans, Wolverhampton,” said a spokesman for West Midlands Police.
"The theft occurred between 4pm on Friday 12 May and 9am on Saturday 13 May.
Anyone with any information is asked to call police on 101.”