Tools fitted with a tracking device were stolen from a police bait vehicle - leading officers straight to a house in Desborough.
Leicestershire Police parked the decoy vehicle in an un-named area of the county where there had been previous concerns about thefts from vehicles.
The tools were fitted with a tracker device and as predicted the vehicle was broken into and tools were stolen.
Officers were able to track the stolen items to an address in Desborough.
Two men, aged 20 and 50, and two women, aged 37 and 47, were arrested during the operation and more than 80 tools were recovered from the property.
The four were arrested on suspicion of handling stolen property and have since been released pending further enquiries.
Officers are now in the process of identifying victims of tool thefts in a bid to reunite the items with their rightful owners.
Detective Inspector Simon Preston is the Leicestershire Police lead on vehicle crime.
He said: “Vehicle crime is a concern for the force and that’s why we have deployed vehicles with tracking devices fitted to the contents to deter criminals from committing such offences.
“The ‘bait’ vehicle is parked on driveways, public car parks and streets and we will continue to use it to stop thefts from vehicles and if they do we will trace them.
“We’d also ask the public to help us by removing tools, equipment and other valuables every night from their vehicles.
“These tools are essential for people to carry out their jobs, and without them their livelihood can be affected.
“We are urging people to follow our advice to ensure they don’t fall victim to tool theft.
“We would also ask that people mark their tools and the contents of their vehicles with their postcode.
“This helps us greatly in reuniting owners with their items in the event they are stolen.”