Express & Star

Farmers ‘under siege’ by criminals call on police for action after thefts and slaughter of animals

Staffordshire farmers ‘under siege’ from criminals have called on police for action after 18 crimes were reported in just one area in six months.


A rural crime meeting was recently held with senior police officers, the Staffordshire branch of the National Farmers Union (NFU) and its members, hosted by farmer and businesswoman Eunice Finney, of Stowe-by-Chartley near Stafford.

Her business, Amerton Farm, has been targeted at least six times from June to December last year with animals slaughtered in fields, thefts and night-time trespass and nearby businesses have also been affected as well as those further afield.

She said: “We have been broken into on four occasions, had an attempted break-in and we have seen chains and padlocks cut and gates taken off their hinges, so we are now looking at robust electric gates to try and deter the thieves.

“We have had five pygmy goats stolen on two nights, on another evening four Hereford cross calves were slaughtered in a field and their carcasses removed from site.

Chief Superintendent Emily Clarke speaks with Eunice Finney

“Then we had a quad bike disappear, which we were fortunate enough to be able to recover but the same night another farmer locally had his quad bikes stolen too.

“That evening someone cut every padlock to our farm buildings, including the workshops, tool sheds, our education centre and containers – stealing tools and other equipment.

“Bizarrely on another night we also had a group of midnight joggers, who climbed the front entrance gates and decided to do laps around the main car park.

“This is apparently a strange craze and while the police were quick in responding they had vanished by the time officers arrived.