CAREER burglars will be targeted as part of a new strategy to cut crime.

A new anti-crime strategy was agreed this week for the Basildon borough prioritising knife crime, burglary, gangs, domestic abuse and reoffending.

Councillor Andrew Barnes, chairman of Basildon Council’s communities committee, said: “This is a change of approach in the way different agencies work together.

“For example, making burglary a priority means we can focus on some families where there is a lot of criminality and they see burglary like a family business.

“The police have already started to specifically target individuals they know are responsible for burglaries and have started to police them much more closely.

“That has led to a reduction of around 29 per cent.”

The three-year Safer Basildon Partnership Strategy aims to protect vulnerable people from abuse and exploitation, tackle re-offending and focus on early intervention and awareness.

Supt Nick Morris, from Essex Police, told the committee: “The great thing about the partnership approach is police can do certain parts of it, but quite often we are just responding to the problem.

“Through partnership working we are able look at how to prevent the problem taking place.

“A lot of this will be longer term pieces of work where we will try and take people away from the gangs and away from county lines.

“Most of the burglaries committed within the Basildon borough are committed by people that live within borough.

“So, although it’s a problem for us as far as people can walk out their front doors and commit burglaries without having to travel anywhere, from a partnership approach we can do more about it because this will be residents within our area.

“Through the partnership the police can arrest these individuals.

“But we can also look at what puts them off committing those offences and what prevents those people from entering into that world in the first place.”

The strategy will be put forward to the full council on Thursday, July 19.