POLICE have pledged to continue tackling the theft of cash machines after a ram-raid burglar was convicted.

Thames Valley Police has released a statement after Danny O’Loughlin was jailed at Oxford Crown Court yesterday, for smashing into the Co-op shop in Watlington and using rope to haul out an ATM. 

READ MORE: Ram-raid gang member jailed after ATM theft and high speed police chase

The 21-year-old, of Waterloo Street in Cheltenham, carried out the raid with unidentified gang members on June 21.

They fled after failing to force the machine open and access the £68,050 worth of cash inside.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Paddy O’Grady, of Force CID at Banbury police station, said: "I am pleased that he has been brought to justice and will now serve a substantial prison sentence.

"ATM machines are an important local service, particularly in more rural areas. Loss of this service has a detrimental impact in the community.

"Thames Valley Police is committed to tackling the theft of cash machines, and will thoroughly investigate any such offences and bring criminals to justice."

Several shops in Oxfordshire have been ploughed into this year and had ATM machines ripped out.

READ MORE: Police close in on ram-raiding gang targeting stores across county 

DC O'Grady said described O’Loughlin's attempt to steal the ATM, which happened at about 2am, as 'audacious'.

He added: "When making his escape, he [O’Loughlin] led officers on a pursuit across two counties before finally being arrested in Gloucestershire.

"Although O’Loughlin initially denied any involvement in these offences, given the tenacity of the investigation and determination of the investigating officers, I am satisfied that he has now pleaded guilty to all the offences."

O’Loughlin admitted burglary other than in a dwelling, driving a motor vehicle dangerously, aggravated vehicle taking and using a motor vehicle on a road or public place without third party insurance.

He refused to name any of his accomplices, however.