A young joiner has been left devastated after he had thousands of pounds worth of equipment stolen when thieves smashed into a locked tool vault at a new housing development in Dundee.
The theft took place during a break-in at a building site in Whitfield in the early hours of Saturday morning.
The crooks got away with power tools worth around £5,500 from a house, currently under construction, in Aberlady Crescent.
The incident is understood to be linked to a wider crime spree in the Whitfield area on Saturday.
Marti Scott, who was the victim of the theft, says police made him aware hooded youngsters were seen in the area.
“The police have told me that the house was broken into and then the thieves broke open a locked metal tool vault that me and my working mate Ross Muir keep our tools in,” Marti, 28, said.
“I understand that the kids got the tools then handed them to guys waiting outside in cars.
“There’s also word of a black car being seen in the area at the time.
“There must have been around 15 tools taken. Mostly power tools and they wouldn’t have been easy to carry away.
“Some of them are pretty heavy so you would definitely have needed something to move them away in.
“They didn’t get away with all the tools thanks goodness, there’s still around £1000 worth left in the box that we are assuming they couldn’t take.”
Marti’s been told it’s unlikely he will have any chance of getting the tools back – or any of the cash he forked out for them.
He added: “Apparently around £400 to £500 worth of tools have since been discovered set fire to in a local park.
“However, I think that whoever took them will hide the tools away just now and then start to gradually bring them out and try to sell them when things quieten down.”
In the meantime, dad-of-two Marti and Ross are going to dip into their own pockets to try and replace the stolen goods.
Self-employed Marti said: “I didn’t work for around a couple of months during lockdown and was delighted to get this job.
“It’s work for a year and it’s also local which was brilliant for us.
“We won’t be able to work until we replace our tools so we are going to be seriously out of pocket.
“We are absolutely gutted that this has happened. It’s pretty devastating for us.”
Meanwhile, the managing director of DJ Laing, Karen Nicoll, said officers from the company visited the site on Sunday following the theft.
She said: “We have been made aware of what’s happened at the site.
“We went to visit it ourselves and are currently co-operating with the police over this matter.
“It is too early for us to comment any further however we will assist with investigations and will look at the situation when we return to work today.
“It is obviously a very distressing incident for those affected.”
Councillor Lynne Short , the depute convener of Dundee City Council’s Community Safety and Public Protection Committee, said: “This is disappointing to hear. Everyone in this city needs to work together to make it a better place for all of us.
“Sadly there is always someone who spoils it. The police are on the case and hopefully someone will be brought to task for this theft and damage.
“The community will also work together to try to make sure that this joiner gets his tools back and that those responsible are held to account.”
Police Scotland has been approached for comment.