A SUSSEX MP has called on petrol retailers to introduce pre-payment across the board to cut down on fuel theft.

Lewes MP and crime prevention minister Norman Baker said petrol stations are encouraging theft by failing to take measures to stop customers leaving forecourts without paying.

Mr Baker questioned whether police should respond to reports of motorists leaving without paying if firms were not introducing measures to reduce the risk. Industry representatives hit back saying pre-payment would lead to ‘grievous loss of trade’.