Police say they are pleased with the results of a tough new burglary crackdown.

Operation Alaska was launched around three weeks ago to tackle a worrying spike in burglaries in Braintree District.

Since the beginning of December there have been 22 break-ins in Braintree and Uttlesford compared to 38 in the same period last year- a reduction of 42.1 per cent.

Operation Alaska is running alongside a countywide crackdown, known as Operation Nemesis.

Officers hope to stop known burglary suspects offending by regularly checking up on them.

Sergeant John Reynolds said: “This operation uses both overt and covert surveillance techniques.

“Many of these suspects do not like being visited by officers.

“However burglary remains a top policing priority, because of the devastating impact it can have on people’s lives.”