July 2016 Rural crime Newsletter. Hello

July 2016
Rural crime Newsletter.

Hello everyone- I’d like to start with some good news:

I am pleased to report that the first group of Hare Coursers caught by the RCAT since the unit was reformed appeared at court in Peterborough on 6th of July 2016. All entered guilty pleas at the first hearing and were fined between £300 and £400. As a team, RCAT officers have been working hard to make sure that the files that we submit to the CPS are of a very high standard leaving the defendants with no option but to plead guilty as soon as they can. I would urge you all to keep reporting incidents of coursing and rural crime to the police using the 101 (non-emergency) or 999 (it is happening now, emergency) service.

Hare Coursing

Month on Month: – June 2015 – 28 reported incidents.
June 2016 – 13 reported incidents (-47%). 6 Immediate, 2 Prompt, 5 No response.
East Cambs 6 (46%)
South Cambs 3 (23%)
Peterborough 3 (23%)
Fens 1
Huntingdon nil.

Whilst the monthly comparisons 2015/2016 is down 47% I want to assure you there is no risk of complacency with officers. We know and are as prepared as much as we can for what this season will bring us.

Church Lead Theft

I am sad to say that churches within Cambridgeshire have been the victims of theft again this last month with Meldreth Church being targeted on 12th July, Comberton on 14th and most recently Thornhaugh in the North of the county being attempted with lead lifted but not stolen.

The RCAT team have just finished two weeks of solid nights to try combatting this crime which is not only hurting Cambridgeshire but our surrounding forces as well.

We need every bit of help from anyone seeing suspicious activity during the hours of darkness in or around churches. This would be lights getting moved or broken, vans parked next to churches, convoys of 2/3 vehicles moving through villages together at night. If you see anything like this I urge you to ring 999 immediately.

We are working closely with the Diocese of Ely and Peterborough to alert people to the risk, connecting with all our surrounding forces to share intelligence and opportunities to stop this crime happening.
Trailer Theft

RCAT officers have also focussed on trailer theft also this month and thankfully trailer theft has significantly reduced over the county. They did however stop two caravans which had been stolen hours earlier from Huntingdon. Two offenders arrested and caravans returned to very grateful owners.

We have been working closely with Clive Harris from NFU Mutual with this trailer initiative and would like to thank him for his consistent support.
One of the stolen caravans from Huntingdon recovered by RCAT can be seen of on the next page.

Machinery Thefts

Theft of machinery across the county have been a constant with a John Deer compact tractor and Sisis scarifier being stolen from Emmanuelle College. Other thefts include Husqvarna, John Deere and MTD ride on lawn mowers being stolen from Littleport.

Again our message is record the details of machinery, photograph it, mark it and ensure appropriate security measures are put in place to prevent theft.
I have mentioned before that larger machines are being stolen to facilitate serious offences. A telehandler stolen from Winwick on 27/7 was used in the ATM burglary at Sawtry Post Office. It is worthy of note that an attempt had been made the same night at Woodwalton but the machine had additional security device fitted preventing its theft. A third telehander was also stolen but crashed in the same area on the same night. This clearly indicating offenders are scoping areas and doing reconnaissance before committing their primary offence to see where machinery can be located. Report any suspicious visit or activity please.
We currently have a JCB telehandler outstanding from Thorney stolen on 1st of month. Hypothesis is its been stored for later use or already shipped out of area.

Diesel Theft

A quantity or red diesel was stolen from an excavator in Ely, 3 tractors had red diesel syphoned from them in Willingham and some domestic heating oil was stolen from Great Staughton.

Officers did arrest a male stealing diesel near to Newmarket – he is now on police bail whilst officer collect additional evidence.


Two batteries were stolen from an electric fence near Glinton in the north of the county and really unusually some sheep were stolen from a field near to Six Mile Bottom. It is suspected offenders were looking to return for more as others had been corralled ready for collection.

Inspector Dick Turner- RCAT