UK Bait Cars: Where's There's Smoke, There's Liars

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
uk bait cars where s there s smoke there s liars

I suppose once you get past the idea of a "bait car" as a form of entrapment, there's nothing wrong with sweetening the lure with a laptop, iPod, cell phone or some other piece of easily fenced consumer electronics on display. And if those items blow up when the prospective perp moves them, leaving the criminal "disorientated" and covered in bright red smoke and dye, well why not? As reports, not only is the methodology effective, it provides PR-hungry public servants with a highly appropriate metaphor. "I want every criminal to know that if they break into someone’s car locally there is a very good chance they will be caught red handed," Hammersmith and Fulham [London] Councillor Greg Smith opined. "And be covered in bright red dye as proof off their crimes.” Bonus! The indelible dye's provided by 3SI security systems ("the leader in currency protection"). It transfers onto the electrical equipment itself, "meaning middle men and fences handling stolen goods pay for their crimes as well as the original thief." Which begs the question: how did a bait car thief evade the police in the first place?

Join the conversation
4 of 7 comments
  • Kazoomaloo Kazoomaloo on Sep 11, 2007

    Entrapment phooey - bait cars are the best ever. I think entrapment only really applies when authorities introduce an illegal scheme to a person and they agree, setting a car out on the street for sub-humans to steal doesn't qualify as entrapment whatsoever. The dye thing does seem weird... POOF! now you got a sweet red interior in your stolen whip!

  • Franz Franz on Sep 11, 2007

    I am guessing that, like with dye-packs given along with stacks of currency to a bank robber, the "explosion" occurs some period of time after the bait is triggered. My understanding is that banks' dye-packs are designed go off after the robber has left the building. I will assume that a similarly equipped laptop would be set to go off a few moments after it has been "lifted".

  • Kevin Kevin on Sep 11, 2007

    um, nice and all but they should use powerful explosives encased in lots of shrapnel-producing metal, instead of that wussy dye.

  • Hal Hal on Sep 11, 2007

    Entrapment? You can't cheat an honest person.