Thieves have been using mopeds to ram front doors to gain access to homes.

Barnet Police are warning people about the spate of this crime across the borough.

Detective Inspector Paul Murray said: “Extra patrols have been introduced and robbery car patrols have been directed to the area, as well as Automatic Number Plate Reader cars.

“There are proactive measures in place to identify the suspects behind these burglaries. Our advice to people is to ensure they have a sturdy front door with good locks.

“Keep gates closed and locked at all times where practicable. If they have an open driveway maybe think about having a chain or gates placed across them.”

There have also been reports of people breaking into homes pretending to be police.

Inspector Adrian Needley told the Times Series: “People have been forcing front doors and shouting ‘police’. They’re obviously picking the idea up from programmes like The Bill.”

He said legitimate police officers would have a warrant, and residents should always ask for identification.

This type of crime has been particularly popular in the Finchley, Edgware and Burnt Oak areas.