SIX men have been arrested following dawn raids across Wirral in connection with more than 30 burglaries at pubs, restaurants and shops across the UK.

Detectives from Cheshire Constabulary conducted the raids today (Thursday, November 7) at seven homes in Prenton, Noctorum, Heswall and Birkenhead with help from Merseyside Police and the North West Regional Organised Crime Unit.

The men, aged 19, 22, 24, 33, 42 and 45 have all been arrested on suspicion to commit burglary.

Officers say the raids are a culmination of a lengthy and complex investigation into more than 30 burglaries at pubs and retail stores across the country where safes have been targeted.

These incidents took place in Cheshire, Merseyside, Staffordshire, Lancashire, Cumbria, North Wales, Dyfed Powys and West Mercia as well as two home burglaries and several thefts from cars.

The investigation has been co-ordinated by detectives from Ellesmere Port and Chester CID, with support from Cheshire’s Serious and Organised Crime Unit.

Detective sergeant Graeme Carvell, who has led the investigation, said: “Today’s arrests follow a lengthy and complex investigation focusing on a large number of incidents across the country – believed to be up to 39 separate offences.

“It appears that these particular incidents, which include more than 30 burglaries at pubs and retail stores, have been carefully planned and co-ordinated and have spanned eight separate police forces across England and Wales.”

All of the men arrested this morning are currently in police custody helping officers with their enquiries.

Several homes are currently being searched as part of the ongoing investigation.

Chief inspector Alex McMillan, who is in charge of policing in Ellesmere Port, said: “The work leading up to and including today’s strike phase is testament to the dedication and commitment by officers and staff to disrupt criminal activity and to continue to keep our communities safe.”

UPDATE: Six men charged after 30 burglaries at pubs and shops across the UK