HOUSEBREAKINGS in Glasgow have HALVED thanks to a massive campaign by police.

An investigation by the Evening Times today reveals break-ins in the city centre - once prime housebreaking territory - has fallen by 56% during the last year.

Our figures reveal there were 37 break-ins or attempted break-ins recorded between April and December last year.

That compares with 84 incidences the previous year.

Detectives say the nationwide roll-out of Operation RAC has helped incidents of the crime reduce faster than almost any other offence.

Wayne Mawson is the Assistant Chief Constable responsible for policing in the West of Scotland - and has one message for anyone planning to commit a housebreaking: don't or you will be put behind bars.

His hard-hitting advice comes as Police Scotland highlighted Operation RAC, aimed at targeting those who commit this "invasive and distressing" crime.

Mr Mawson, said: "I say this message directly to those intent on committing housebreakings. We will use every resource at our disposal to remove you from our communities and ensure you spend time behind bars."

Operation RAC - which stands for Recovery and Capture - sees teams of specialist officers investigate break-ins to homes, businesses and other buildings.

Senior police officers said the aim is to increase high visibility patrols and provide reassurance for the public.

Last month, police revealed that anyone charged with house-breaking over the festive period would be charged on indictment and face trial before a sheriff.

The scheme also meant that a jury could allow tougher sentences to be issued for the crime.

Mr Mawson, added: "Housebreaking has been highlighted as a priority for a number of our divisions.

"Officers in these areas will be taking targeted action to detect anyone involved and deter further offences from occurring."

Police also believe the easy availability of cheap electronic goods and better security systems have helped with the drop in crime.

For years after the financial crash, police had been bracing themselves for a rise in thefts - but it increase has never materialised.

Housebreaking - which was widely predicted to soar - has yo-yo-ed.

Across Glasgow, there were 4042 incidences of the crime in 2007-2008.

Last year, there were 4032.

Common thefts and shoplifting are also down from seven years ago.

But, despite the promising figures, city officers have vowed to continue their fight against this "invasive" crime.

Chief Inspector Alan Porte, area commander for Glasgow City Centre, said: "A break-in to your home is a particularly nasty experience.

"I'm delighted to say that by intelligently targeting patrols we have been able to reduce the incidence of this invasive crime by half in Glasgow city centre."

Break-ins at commercial properties in the city centre, including shops, restau-rants, pubs and clubs, have also fallen by 20%. There were fewer than 98 incid-ences between April and December last year, comp-ared to 123 the previous year.

Mr Porte, added: "We have also had success in signif-icantly reducing the number of commercial premises broken into over the past year. We will continue to work hard to reduce this even further."