EIGHT men have now been arrested after a number of burglary and thefts in Widnes and St Helens.

The arrests took place this morning (Wednesday) at around 8am after warrants were executed simultaneously at the addresses.

The men – two aged 18, 24, 25, 29, 30, 50 and 58 – have subsequently been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit theft and burglary.

They are currently in custody being questioned by officers.

Detective Inspector Ian Whiley, of Widnes Local Policing Unit (LPU), said: “The raids – six in Widnes and one in St Helens – were carried out as part of Cheshire Constabulary’s ongoing mission to bring those involved in serious and organised crime to justice.

“They followed extensive enquiries regarding a number of burglaries and thefts across Cheshire and Merseyside."

He added: “Officers from Widnes LPU have been gathering evidence and intelligence behind the scenes and the extensive work has now led to seven men being arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit burglaries and thefts.

“I hope that this operation reassures communities that we are committed to doing all we can to tackle this type of criminality.”

The raids were conducted by Widnes LPU officers, in collaboration with Halton Borough Council as part of the Safer Halton Partnership.

Officers have carried out extensive searches of all the addresses.

They have seized two vehicles that are believed to have been used to commit crimes. They have also seized what is believed to be stolen property.