School metal thieves spark outrage

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Metal thieves have sparked outrage by causing many hundreds of pounds damage to a local primary school.

Up to 70 metres of lead was removed from the roof of Longtower Primary School on Monday night.

Principal Eamon Devlin said the “disgraceful” thieves caused damage estimated at £2,000 to the building.

He said those who targeted the Bishop Street school “should be ashamed of themselves”. “What they’ve done is absolutely disgraceful,” he said.

Mr Devlin also questioned the scrutiny techniques of scrap merchants who purchase stolen metals from thieves.

“There are questions to be asked of those who are accepting this stolen lead,” he said.

Last June there was a spate of metal thefts at local schools when thieves targeted Holy Child primary school, St Peter’s High School, St Eithne’s primary school, and Holy Family primary school.

Sinn Féin’s local education spokesperson, Councillor Patricia Logue, said the thefts from schools were “a very worrying trend”.

“Thieves have been targeting homes, businesses, sporting facilities and places of worship.”

Meanwhile, SDLP Foyle MP Mark Durkan is calling for changes in the law regarding scrap metal merchants in order to make it more difficult for thieves to profit from their crime.