Multi-agency initiative to tackle rural crime

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Monday, September 30th, 2013
Community
Police have conducted a number of proactive checks on livestock marts across Northern Ireland in a bid to tackle rural crime. Rural and agricultural crime is a serious issue and police say they understand the concerns of those who have been directly involved. The PSNI said it is important to stress that they take a robust approach in tackling all crime across Northern Ireland, including those which affect the rural community. The operation was part of a multi-agency initiative, which has been supported by officers across four of the PSNI’s policing districts in conjunction with An Garda Síochána, the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD), the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) in Republic of Ireland and the Department of Health’s Medicines Regulatory Group. During the week-long operation, which ran from September 16th until the 21st, police, along with partner agencies, attended marts in Clogher, Armoy, Ballymena, Markethill, Camlough, Keady, Rathfriland and Hilltown. An Garda Síochána attended a mart at Ballybay in Co. Monaghan. During the multi-agency initiative, officers from DARD and the PSNI took the opportunity to check livestock documentation, speak to farmers about farm security and offer any assistance from the PSNI crime prevention officer in regards to a farm security inspection. Officials from the Medicines Regulatory Group were also on hand to offer support regarding the use of illegal and counterfeit veterinary medicines. Outlining the aims of the Police operation, Chief Inspector Jane Humphries said, “We are committed to reducing rural and agricultural crime across Northern Ireland. “Police want to work towards reducing opportunities for this type of crime by increasing public awareness, working with other partner agencies to identify ways of preventing crime, and targeting and arresting those committing such offences.” The prevention and detection of rural and agricultural crime continues on a day-to-day basis and local police have requested assistance from rural communities by asking them to report suspicious activity surrounding the movement of livestock.

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