London, Aug 17 (ANI): Manchester Police in the UK allowed thieves to ride off on stolen motorbikes worth nearly 20,000 pounds because the gang were not wearing crash helmets.
Police feared they would have been liable under safety guidelines for any injuries suffered by the thieves if they crashed.
The three suspects fled on a Yamaha R1, a Honda 1000 Fireblade and a Honda CBR 600 and at least one of the officers saw them.
The incident has been labelled 'ridiculous' by Tony Crawford, who opened the Manchester Motorcycle Centre in Altrincham just two weeks ago.
"If I was going to do an armed robbery, I know now what my choice of getaway vehicle would be. I'd go helmetless on a bike and I'd be well away," The Daily Express quoted Crawford as saying.
Peter Fahy, Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police, said: "Whether we like it or not a mood has been created where it comes across to police officers that the rights and welfare of an offender or a suspected offender is more important than our duty to arrest offenders."
Fahy denied that the incident showed that police were getting softer on crime. (ANI)