‘Dangerous criminals’ involved in Carrickfergus hijacking

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Elected representatives are encouraging local people to assist police with an investigation into a van hijacking in Carrickfergus yesterday.

Detective Sergeant Peter Crothers said: “It was reported that a male, armed with a handgun, got into a white Mercedes Sprinter van as it was being driven in the Belfast Road area of the town at around 10.15am and threatened the driver.

“He was ordered to drive to the Glencairn Road in North Belfast, where the contents of his van were transferred to a waiting white Transit van which then made off from the scene.

“The driver was assaulted and has been taken to hospital for treatment. The Sprinter van was set alight and has been totally destroyed.”

Commenting on the incident, East Antrim MLA Roy Beggs said: “Clearly this is a dangerous group of criminals and I would urge the public to assist by providing any possible relevant information to assist in identifying those involved.”

He was joined in the call by fellow Assembly member Stewart Dickson, who expressed his “shock and concern” for the driver of the van.

Police are appealing for anyone with any information to contact detectives in Larne on 101. Information can also be given through the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.