Wanted - Cattle Thieves
AN UNPRECEDENTED spate of cattle rustling in the Dungannon District has prompted the police to launch an innovative scheme to deter thieves.
Last year, opportunistic thieves targeted 16 farms across the borough, a total which looks set to be exceeded by this year’s figure with 12 farms hit in the first six months of 2012.
In the latest incident, thieves stole six Continental Charolais Cross cattle from a field on the Old Eglish Road on Wednesday.
The sharp increase in cattle rustling has been linked to the spiralling price of beef.
Police are now launching a scheme to ‘freeze brand’ cattle, and will provide information about the measure in Clogher Community Centre, Augher, on Thursday at 7.30pm.
The initiative is one of a number that police are undertaking to tackle the thefts of livestock in the Dungannon & South Tyrone Borough as part of a Farmwatch scheme.
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Inspector Keith Jamieson, Sector Commander for Dungannon and South Tyrone, commented: “Farmwatch is really an extension of the successful Neighbourhood Watch scheme that has been operating in towns and villages for a number of years.
“However, it is tailored specifically to the needs of the rural and farming community.
“The Farmwatch scheme is free to join and members will benefit from a range of crime prevention measures including Farmwatch Area signage, text alerts regarding rural crime, trailer marking and access to all manner of PSNI approved crime prevention products, often at a subsidised cost.
“Police are aware of the real concerns of the farming community particularly with regard to livestock theft, and are working closely with partner agencies, including the Ulster Farmers Union and DARD, to combat the thieves.
“Nevertheless, any measures that are taken would be wholly complemented if the police receive assistance and information from the rural community.
“The Farmwatch scheme will give my officers the opportunity to engage with farmers and build relationships that will permit a regular exchange of information on the activities of those who wish to prey on the hard-working rural community.”
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Weather for Dungannon
Tuesday 21 May 2013
Temperature: 9 C to 14 C
Wind Speed: 18 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 4 C to 12 C
Wind Speed: 17 mph
Wind direction: North