Express & Star

Warning to farmers to be vigilant after spate of sheep thefts

Farmers across north Worcestershire are being warned to be extra vigilant following three recent incidents of sheep theft and attempted sheep theft in the region.


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Officers from the Rural and Business Crime teams at West Mercia Police have issued the warning following reports that there have been several incidents in the Iverley area.

The incident saw a pregnant ewe stolen, a few weeks after two lambs were stolen and there was a further incident when another attempt was made to take lambs from the same location.

On the first occasion, the force said it suspected the thieves discovered the ewe was pregnant, so abandoned her in a lay-by miles away in Brierley Hill, where another farmer found her and returned to her owners.

On Sunday, March 24, thieves attempted to steal lambs from a farm in Upton Warren, near Bromsgrove, but the would-be thieves were disturbed by a member of the public and although they tried to flee with the lamb, it was left behind.

A couple of days ago, two Rams worth around £500 each were reported stolen from a farm in Wildmoor, near Bromsgrove.

Sarah Sceats, Rural and Business Crime Officer for North Worcestershire, said: “We are urging farmers to be extra vigilant of their livestock following these recent incidents.

“We are advising them to take the time to check the perimeters of their land are as secure as possible and, where practical, to keep sheep and lambs as close to the farm as they can.

“You can find further advice on our website on protecting your livestock at Rural crime prevention on the West Mercia Police website.”

It is believed the thefts and attempted thefts could be for the illegal sale of meat on the black market.

The force said that meat bought from criminal sources would not meet the safety standards of shop-bought products.

Sarah Sceats said: “We would further warn potential thieves that stealing lambs at this time of year is not only a criminal offence, but that in any case they would also not be getting much meat on the bones and that it is also cruel to separate them from their parents which can be particularly distressing for the ewes."

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