Crackdown on rural crime in Norfolk sees seven arrests

PUBLISHED: 11:43 01 August 2018 | UPDATED: 14:04 01 August 2018

Police have stepped up patrols to combat rising rural crime. Photo: PA Wire.

Police have stepped up patrols to combat rising rural crime. Photo: PA Wire.

PA Wire/Press Association Images

A crackdown on rural crime to combat rising burglaries and thefts at farms has led to seven arrests in Breckland and West Norfolk.

Patrols have been increased as part of Operation Kingbird with cash and drugs seized and stolen property, including two horses, recovered.

Two men were arrested on Sunday, July 29 after a vehicle failed to stop for police in Swaffham.

Police pursued the vehicle which was eventually stopped in Castle Acre.

Kieran Price, 19 and of Wakehurst Place, Cardiff, has been charged with dangerous driving, failing to stop, driving without a licence, driving without insurance and going equipped for theft.

He was remanded in police custody and appeared via video link before Norwich magistrates on Tuesday, July 31.

He was released on conditional bail to appear before Norwich Crown Court at a later date. A second man, aged 18, arrested in connection with the incident, was released without charge.

Meanwhile, a warrant was executed at a property in Swaffham on June 6 where stolen property, two horses and a trailer, were recovered.

A large amount of heroin, more than 100 cannabis plants and about £10,000 was seized. A 31-year-old man and 29-year-old woman arrested in connection with the incident have been released under investigation while enquiries continue.

On 24 July a 19-year-old man was arrested in Swaffham in connection with the theft of batteries. He’s been released under investigation while enquiries continue.

Two other males, aged 20 and 16, were arrested in Swaffham on June 22 on suspicion of handling stolen goods. Both men were questioned and released under investigation while officers continue with their enquiries.

Policing commander for Breckland North, Inspector Jon Papworth said: “We are concerned about this criminal activity and we’ve launched a dedicated operation to target offenders while addressing concerns within the farming community.

“Officers, including frontline response, beat managers and specialist units, are working together to disrupt and deter criminals and patrol vulnerable locations.

“While we’ve seen some promising results we are continuing to treat these crimes seriously and will deal with offenders robustly.”

Members of the public are urged to report any suspicious incidents/activity/persons and vehicles to police on 101.

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