WHILE you can understand why the police cannot cover the costs of recovery firms picking up stolen vehicles, you can't help but feel sorry for the victims who have to payout just to get their car or bike back.

With someone like Mason Carr, a teenager on a low income, you feel all the more sorry for the victim. The 17-year-old not only had his motorbike stolen, but then had the slap in the face of having to pay £150 to cover the recovery costs to get the vehicle back from police.

Still, with our police having to work with tight budgets and focus their finances on staff and equipment, you can appreciate why West Mercia has the policy that "the cost of the recovery is down to the registered keeper of the vehicle" – otherwise the overall annual bill for the force would be massive.

Of course, when the offenders are caught and convicted, they are usually ordered to pay compensation to their victim as part of their sentence.

But, in this particular case, the thieves who stole Mason's bike appear unlikely to be caught – leaving the 17-year-old out of pocket.