FIVE cars have been stolen in south and north Belfast o n Thursday morningwhile the owners were de-icing them.
Thievees targete leafy areas such as Rosetta Park, Ardenlee Green and Orangefield Avenue.
Police warned motorists not to leave their cars unattended with the engines running as it presents a gift to opportunistic thieves.
A statement said: “In this current cold spell motorists, in an effort to de-ice their vehicles or to warm them up, have a tendency to switch the engine on and leave the vehicles running.
“This is a gift to nearby opportunistic thieves who just jump into the vehicles and drive off.
“While it is good practice that all windows should be thoroughly thawed and cleared before driving, police would advise motorists to sit in the vehicle for the few minutes it takes to clear windows and heat the interior.
“Drivers should not switch their engines on and get out to scrape the exterior of their vehicles as cheeky thieves will also take this opportunity even though the owners are close by.”
Anyone with information on the crimes is asked to ring police on 0845 600 8000.