Livestock rustlers are back
Last year Somerset suffered extensive livestock theft during the spring and early summer with sheep, lambs and pigs all stolen. Avon & Somerset Police had hoped that the work of the Rural Crime Team with farmers to raise awareness and promote crime prevention tactics had helped. In the early part of the year there were a few successful operations targeting thieves and it looked as if the problem was on the wane.
However, in the last two weeks there has been a rapid increase in thefts with six incidents where sheep have been taken in a short space of time. The thefts have occurred across the county including in South Petherton, Ilminster, Langport (where 240 sheep were taken from a field overnight between the 24/25th July), and most recently Long Sutton. Pigs and geese have also been taken.
For Avon & Somerset Police PC Drabble told us “We are asking the communities of Somerset to be vigilant for anyone moving livestock around particularly at night. If you see people in fields or with vehicles containing livestock at night, please give us a call – we would rather ascertain a person is there legitimately, than have to deal with a subsequent theft.”