A man – aged in his 40s from Hampshire - has been arrested as a police investigation into illegal sheep butchery continues.
Northamptonshire Police is investigating reports of sheep being killed and illegally butchered.
Criminal damage and theft
A spokesperson confirmed that a man was arrested on suspicion of criminal damage and theft as part of the investigation, which was launched after the first reports of illegal slaughter were received earlier this month.
Detective Inspector Johnny Campbell of Northampton CID - the senior investigating officer for Operation Stock - said: “We’re taking this fast-moving investigation very seriously with a dedicated team following a number of lines of inquiry into these awful crimes.
“One man was arrested in connection with these incidents has been released under investigation, with inquiries ongoing as our investigators and the Rural Crime Team work tirelessly to bring those responsible to justice.”
“We’re receiving lots of intelligence into CID regarding Operation Stock and I’d like to thank everyone who has reported suspicious activity to us.”
Impact on the farming community
Inspector Tracy Moore - rural crime lead at Northamptonshire Police - added: “We’re aware of the impact these dreadful incidents have had on our farming community and our dedicated Operation Stock police patrols continue around the clock.”
“We’re also working with partners and the community to provide reassurance and advice, including the distribution of livestock warning signs kindly funded by the Office of the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner,” she concluded.
Park End Farming LTD
14 of Park End Farming LTD’s lambs were killed in a field in Northamptonshire between 4 pm on Sunday, July 13th and Monday, July 14th, as reported by us here.
The carcasses of 12 lambs were stolen, while the remains of two others were left in a farmer’s field.
In a statement on Facebook, Park End Farming LTD said: “Today (July 8th), the worst thing happened that my children witnessed. We found that our sheep were butchered in the field last night (July 7th).”
“Words cannot describe how I feel after all the hard work and love that goes into our stock. Today, I feel like giving up.”
In a second statement, the farm owners added: “To make matters, worse we are still finding ewes with their throats slit around the field and the death count continues to rise!”
In a statement on Facebook this morning (Friday, July 26th), the farmers said: “We want to thank everyone for their overwhelming support during this time towards our family and our farm. It has been truly humbling.”
“Northamptonshire Police and our local farmwatch group have been working incredibly hard at all hours of the day and night and given huge amounts of community support let’s hope that this is the start of justice being served.”
Image source: Park End Farming LTD \ Facebook