POLICE have charged six youths in the past six weeks with 360 graffiti offences in Launceston.

Police said yesterday that the Northern Graffiti Taskforce had charged the teenagers, aged between 17 and 19, over offences committed throughout the city since February.

Acting Sergeant Scott McKinnell said that one individual was charged with more than 140 counts.

“We think it is having a significant impact on the perception of safety in the city; Launceston is a safe city compared to other regional centres this size, but when the place looks like a ghetto people feel less safe,” Acting Sergeant McKinnell said.

“Some of the offenders that we have caught have been part of organised groups known and crews and we have identified three distinct crews that the offenders belong to but others act independently.”

Two of those charged are allegedly responsible for several publicised graffiti attacks in January including the “F— Kony” graffiti on the corner of Brisbane and Wellington streets, above Harris Scarfe and on the side of Myer.

Acting Sergeant McKinnell said that graffiti was expensive to remove, with small tags costing $50 and big pieces like the Harris Scarfe incident costing up to $8000.

The teenagers will appear in the Launceston Magistrates Court on September 19.

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