MEN climbed into a Tesco lorry then attempted to steal cigarettes as it drove along the A34.

The bizarre sight was witnessed by drivers on the busy trunk road on Thursday, August 30, who flashed the lorry driver with their lights to alert him to what was happening.

Thames Valley Police released details of the incident this afternoon, appealing for witnesses and revealing it has been linked the discovery of a burnt-out van in Oxford. 

The men are thought to have used a white Ford Transit van to follow the lorry from Reading Tesco depot, between 1pm and 2.30pm.

They boarded the back of the lorry while it was stationary at traffic lights at the junction from M4 onto the A34 at Chieveley.

The lorry driver noticed other drivers flashing their lights at him and attempted to slow down so the men could get off.

Members of the public contacted police, who stopped the lorry at Hinksey Hill in Oxford, just off the A34, but the men ran away.

The next morning at about 8.45am, the same white Ford Transit van was discovered torched at Hinksey Hill, after a suspected arson. 

Investigating officer PC Rich Allmond, of Abingdon Investigation Hub, said: "While inside they [the men] moved containers containing cigarettes in preparation to steal them.

"A van was following the lorry whilst the two offenders were inside.

"I would like to speak to anyone who witnessed this incident or has any information which could assist our investigation."

Anyone with any information about the incident can contact 101 quoting the reference 43180265851, or report it online or via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.