Officers from Croydon found an Ivor Novello Music Award in a scrap metal yard on Tuesday, May 21 during a crackdown code-named ‘Operation Ferrous’.
The Ivor Novello award was one of the array of items, amongst 500kg of stolen BT telephone exchange batteries and three stolen push bikes, seized by officers from scrap metal dealers across London.
The award went missing during an office move in 1999, athough the incident was not reported to the police.
After searching the scrap metal yard, officers failed to produce the correct documentation for the item at first.
It was later identified that the item had been made specifically for the Ivor Novello Institute.
The Ivor Novello Awards for songwriting and composing is named after the Cardiff-born entertainer Ivor Novello. They are presented annually in London by the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (BASCA) and were first introduced in 1955.
Acting Inspector James Coomber, of the MPS London Regional Intelligence Unit, said: “Metal crime does not represent one single crime type itself but falls into one of the five major crime types: criminal damage, burglary (dwelling & non-dwelling), theft from motor vehicle and other theft”. He also noted that this type of crime is often committed by ‘highly organised criminals’.
Under amendments to the Scrap Metal Dealer’s Act 1964 which came into effect in December 2012, scrap metal dealers are prohibited from paying cash for scrap metal. Payments by cheque or bank transfer can only be processed once recognised identification is produced.
Peter Sulsh, 41, a yard Manager at Southwark, a recycling company processing domestic and industrial materials for export said ”We record pictures and all other necessary details of anyone bringing in scraps on our computers. The value of purchase is determined by weight and grade of materials brought in, and we maintain payment strictly by cheque. I have been in this business for the past Twenty-Six years and I can tell you that this is the law.”