The Charity Crimestoppers has launched the largest social media campaign in its 26 year history, specifically aimed at rural crime. Rural crime represents a major challenge to our society and it costs the United Kingdom in the region of £42,000,000 a year and this makes it a very lucrative source of income for the criminals.
Crimestoppers are working extensively in partnership with a number of organisations including Suffolk Police, Neighbourhood Watch and rural and corporate partners, to form a strong campaigning platform to impact upon the damage of rural criminality and to identify the perpetrators responsible. Find out lots more about the different elements of this rural crime campaign from Crimestoppers and their partners on their Blog.
Here is a survey which aims to establish how farms in England and Wales are affected by crime, and how farmers are protecting their property. Please help the collection of this information by completing the farm crime survey.
Reporting Suspicious Activity
- All communities should remain vigilant and report suspicious behaviour to the police
- Report individuals asking specific questions about, or taking pictures of, a facility or a farm’s processes
- Report any attempts to purchase fertilisers, diesel, herbicides or pesticides by those not authorised or suspicious individuals
- Take the registration number of any suspicious vehicles
To keep up-to-date with all the latest information about crime and policing issues in your area of Suffolk, sign up to the Free messaging service, Police Direct. If you wish to speak to someone at Suffolk Police, then use the 101 non emergency telephone number. However in an emergency always call 999
All property, including tractors/JCBs etc should be uniquely marked, photographed and recorded somewhere safe. Details should include serial, chassis and model numbers. Suffolk Police have a wide range of useful rural crime information, with topics range from equipment security to hare coursing, available on their website.
Also on the website you can download ‘Shutting the gate on Rural Crime’, a useful leaflet containing all the Police rural crime initiatives.
In Suffolk there are a number of ‘Watch’ schemes including: Horse Watch, Allotment Watch, Marine Watch, as well as the widely known Neighbourhood Watch. Read all about the different watch schemes and about how to join one, on the Suffolk Police website.
So called ‘Legal Highs’ and Illegal Drugs
A recent Telegraph article reported that Rural areas and small towns are facing an epidemic of so-called “legal high” drugs which police are struggling to tackle. An all-party Home Affairs Select Committee said new synthetic drugs are appearing on the market at the rate of more than one a week, making it impossible for current drug laws to keep pace.
What is a ‘Legal High’? The correct description is New Psychoactive Substances (NPS). We have put together an explanation of what legal highs contain, what the packaging looks like, the risks of taking them and a request from Suffolk Trading Standards to help get them off the shelves by reporting where these are being sold to their Helpline on 08454 040506. If you have any other issues or concerns you can report these by email to Suffolk Police at KeepingUsInformed@suffolk.pnn.police.uk
MPs have also warned that cannabis farms continue to blight rural villages. Recent reports of finds in Suffolk include a cannabis factory found in a bunker at Rendlesham. Possible signs of a cannabis factory could be:
- Lighting and ventilation equipment.
- Covered up or blocked up windows.
- Comings and goings to a property at all hours.
- Strong lighting day and night.
- High levels of heat and condensation i.e windows constantly misted up.
- The constant buzz of ventilation.
- The strong sickly smell given off by cannabis plant.
- Lots of power cables that could possibly link up to lamp posts so that they don’t have to pay for the large amounts of electricity they use.
If you suspect there is one near you please phone us on 101 or alternatively call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.
Where possible store all fertiliser inside a dedicated locked building or compound.
- Do not leave fertiliser where it is visible to the public
- Do not sell fertiliser unless the purchaser is known by you to be a bona-fide farmer or user
- Record fertiliser deliveries and usage and carryout regular stock takes and Report immediately any stock discrepancy or loss to the police
- Record any manufacturer code numbers from the bags and detonation resistance test certificates as you may be required to present them
The Health and Safety Executive can provide further advice on the storage and transportation of fertilisers, particularly ammonium nitrate. You can also download a multi-agency Leaflet about fertiliser storage.