Building Site Theft

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BUILDING YOUR DREAM HOME IS STRESSFUL ENOUGH ..... BUT IMAGINE BEING ROBBED...... BEFORE YOU'D EVEN MOVED IN...

"It's abit gut wrenching because it's added another three weeks until we can move in," said Tom Stergiopoulos.

THAT'S WHAT HAPPENED TO OWNER BUILDER TOM STERGIOPOULOS

"This is the first time it happened to me, This is the third home I've been involved in building you do hear about it all the time it is very common for materials to go missing," said Tom Stergiopoulos.

THE ADELAIDE DAD HAS BEEN OVERSEEING THE CONSTRUCTION OF HIS NEW FAMILY HOME IN BROMPTON FOR THE PAST 16 MONTHS...

AND IT'S BEEN A BIT OF A ROUGH RIDE....

"Very early on in the building site, when the builder was in charge 100 % he had some theft with building materials and vandalism," said Tom Stergiopoulos.

A TOTAL OF TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS IN MATERIALS AND DAMAGES... WHICH THANKFULLY WAS COVERED BY INSURANCE.

BUT FOR ADDED SECURITY....TOM INSTALLED A SURVEILLANCE CAMERA ALONGSIDE HIS HOME...

AND BINGO... LAST WEEK IT CAUGHT THIS SUSPICIOUS- LOOKING GUY.

"Ive got footage of him comin in the night before, twice one at 11.30pm and he was checking the perimeter he stayed for 10mins, secondly he came back with a torch light and he had a closer look at the fence, it was quite obvious he was interested in the fence," said Tom Stergiopoulos.

TOM ALERTED THE POLICE... BUT THEY COULDN'T DO MUCH...

HOWEVER THE VERY NEXT DAY... THE THIEF RETURNED...THIS TIME TAKING OFF WITH HIS ALUMINUM SLATE FENCE... WORTH TWO THOUSAND DOLLARS..

"He came in at 7.50pm and the whole thing took about 50mins and he's on footage for that whole 50mins mins," said Tom Stergiopoulos.

"It's not surprising that some people will do the wrong thing and when they see and opportunity will steal from sites," said David Callan.

DAVID CALLAN FROM MASTER BUILDERS SA SAYS THEFTS FROM CONSTRUCTION SITES IS AN EPIDEMIC...

"Theft of building sites has increased builders now probably don't talk to us about it because it's so common," said David Callan.

AROUND 40 PER CENT OF COMMERCIAL AND RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS UNDER CONSTRUCTION ARE HIT BY THIEVES WHO SEEM TO KNOW THE RIGHT TIME TO STRIKE.

"The common items are things like timber, doors, windows, hot water services, particularly any white goods if they are available," said David Callan.

AND IT'S OFTEN DIFFICULT TO TRACE THE STOLEN GOODS

"In some cases if they can be turned into scrape like copper or alumnion they are taken to scrape merchants. Other items are sold as second hand goods," said David Callan.

DAVID SAYS IT VITAL THE BUILDER AND OWNER ARE PROPERLY COVERED...

"They should have insurances in place that insures not only the builder but those items are insured the owner that's contractor the builder is not responsible for that site," said David Callan.

AND THESE ARE SOME OTHER WAYS TO MINIMISE YOUR CHANCES OF BECOMING A VICTIM....

DON'T LEAVE EXPENSIVE ITEMS LYING AROUND THE SITE UNATTENDED
KEEP ITEMS UNDER LOCK AND KEY
ARRANGE INSTALLATION THE SAME DAY OF DELIVERY
INSTALL CCTV CAMERAS AND INTERNAL SECURITY

"Having any monitoring, being able to establish who it was that stole those items would be very good," said David Callan.

TOM'S NOW HOPING THIS FOOTAGE WILL HELP TO CATCH THE CULPRIT AND STOP HIM FROM RETURNING..
...
IF YOU RECOGNISE HIM... OR THINK YOU CAN HELP.. CONTACT CRIME STOPPERS.. 1800 333 000

"The damage he's caused is greater than the theft and its not worth it for him really, he's better off being a good citizen," said Tom.

BUT FIRST TONIGHT RAMPANT THEFT AND VANDALISM.... ADELAIDE BUILDERS AND NEW HOME-OWNERS BEING SWAMPED BY A CRIME EPEDEMIC.

BUILDING SITE BURGLARY IS ALL TO COMMON ... AND OFTEN THE CULPRITS GET AWAY WITH IT.

BUT NOT THE THIEF IN THIS NEXT STORY...

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