POLICE have praised a crime-busting CCTV system that has helped in 400 incidents in the last five months alone.

Just last month the camera network in Hambleton helped police directly with 41 incidents - including catching a busy shoplifter.

A member of Business Against Crime Hambleton, based in Northallerton alerted CCTV operators to a female acting suspiciously in their store - and she was tracked down by the cameras and later charged with four accounts of shoplifting.

"Agencies working together can make such a huge difference when assisting to catch suspects involved in crime," said Chief Inspector Andy Everitt, commander of the Hambleton Safer Neighbourhood Team.

"Results like this one shows the value of the CCTV systems we have here in Hambleton.

"The CCTV system has had many other successes too - including crimes involving drunken people fighting and young drivers involved in anti-social behaviour.

"The evidence available is so good it is difficult to argue against if you are the one under investigation."

Since April the cameras have been used in 400 incidents throughout Hambleton – 63 of which have assisted with police arrests.

In July alone 41 incidents were reported to the police and another 71 incidents reported by the public, local retailers and officers were looked into.