Thieves steal £700,000 of equipment from MoD

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The Independent Online

A plane fuselage, a clarinet, helicopter parts and dozens of night vision goggles have been stolen from the Ministry of Defence in the past 10 months.

Peter Luff, a junior defence minister, revealed thieves had taken nearly £700,000 worth of cash and equipment since last May. The haul ranged from medals and ceremonial swords to a ship's anchor and Army-issue ration packs. Other loot included a bridge, a boat rudder, body armour, guns, marker lights and a flag.

Night vision goggles worth £49,000 were stolen, as well as two batches of night sights, worth £88,000. The most expensive item stolen was a helicopter rotor tuner, worth £50,000, taken last November.

The figures, which only cover items reported stolen in the UK, were uncovered by Labour's Luciana Berger, who tabled a written Parliamentary question asking for a breakdown of items worth £100 stolen from the MoD since the Coalition took office.

Ms Berger said: "I will be demanding assurances from ministers that these materials have not fallen into the hands of Britain's enemies. This is nothing short of a national disgrace."