Gas explosion in attempted cash machine theft in Leeds

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Police in Leeds are appealing for witnesses after a cash machine was damaged in a gas explosion caused by would-be thieves.

Shortly after 2.30am on New Year’s Day police received a report of an explosion at a free-standing cash machine in the car park of McDonald’s, in Butt Lane, Bramley.

Enquiries established that the suspects had pumped gas into the machine and ignited it in an attempt to get to the cash held within. While the front of the unit was damaged the cash is securely housed within it and nothing was stolen.

Detective Constable Phil Joyce, of Leeds District CID, said: “This is an unusual method for the offenders to have used and thankfully one which has been shown to be unsuccessful in giving them access to any cash.

“Two suspects were seen near the machine and made off in the direction of Henconner Lane afterwards. I would like to hear from anyone who was in the area at the time and who witnessed the incident.

“I am particularly keen to hear from one potential witness who was described as a white male wearing dark clothing who was walking a German Shepherd dog. It is believed he may have seen the suspects ignite the gas.”

Anyone with any information is asked to contact DC Joyce at Elland Road via 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.