Dedicated detectives have arrested three men on suspicion of theft after boxloads of lateral flow tests were stolen from a lorry in Harlow

Officers managed to retrieve the tests, which were destined for secondary schools across the country, after they were stolen from a lorry at Harlow Business Park in the early hours of yesterday, Tuesday 2 March.

A 31 year-old man from Canvey, a 27 year-old man from Newham and a 37 year-old man from Dagenham all remain in custody on suspicion of theft. The man from Dagenham has also been arrested on suspicion of drug driving.

Chief Superintendent Stuart Hooper, who oversees local policing in the West of Essex, said: “Our colleagues in the NHS, and dedicated volunteers across the country, are working tirelessly to stop the spread of coronavirus and save lives.

“I’m thrilled that we were able to recover the lateral flow tests so that those in need are able to keep themselves and others safe at this difficult time.

“I’d like to remind the people of Essex that you can go and get yourself tested at sites across the county, and we’d encourage you to do so where possible.”