Sinn Féin Councillor Kevin Campbell has warned householders to be on their guard against oil thieves in the run up to Christmas.
He said: “With now being into the grip of winter, temperatures dropping and nights and mornings getting a lot darker we have seen in previous years a marked increase in oil thefts at this time.
“With the cost of home heating, having oil stolen is causing severe hardship to many families who cannot afford to refill their tanks.
“This type of crime takes time and special equipment such as a tanker or large tank in the back of a van and siphoning equipment. I would call on people to be observant.
“If you see suspicious activity in the laneways around a neighbour’s house, particularly if there is no one at home, to call the police.”