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Breaking News – Illegal lamb slaughter, Harpole

Written by on August 30, 2019

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Article Published on Friday August 30, 2019 12:27 AM by

- Daventry Area Crime -
Breaking News – Illegal lamb slaughter, Harpole

Daventry Area Crime -

It’s been reported that a large amount of sheep and lambs were slaughtered last night in the fields next to the double roundabout on Sandy Lane (near Harpole).

It is though that this happened between 6pm and 3am this morning.

This is a developing news story.

Updated: 14:40 30/08/2019 – Northamptonshire Police:

Police on proactive rural patrols as part of Operation Stock discovered the illegal slaughter of at least 26 lambs and breeding ewes in a field between Duston and Harpole.

Operation Stock is the Northamptonshire Police investigation into incidents of illegal sheep butchery and theft, with the latest incident discovered in a field off Roman Road and Sandy Lane at around 3.25am this morning, Friday, August 30.

When officers alerted the farmer to the incident he explained some of the slaughtered animals had recently been treated with medication which would mean they could not enter the food chain for a set period of time.

Inspector Tracy Moore, who leads on rural crime at Northamptonshire Police, said: “This incident has caused the farmer a great deal of distress, as well as to the officers who discovered the scene.

“We are also concern about where the stolen meat may end up, as due to the recent use of veterinary medication it may not be fit for human consumption.

“Alongside our Trading Standards partners, our advice to the public remains to only buy meat from reputable outlets, and to avoid buying cheap meat in suspicious circumstances.

“The Operation Stock investigation remains ongoing with active lines of enquiry being followed up both within our force and neighbouring police forces.

“Sadly this incident shows the need for the public to remain vigilant and call in any suspicious activity in rural areas or around livestock to police on 101, or 999 if they believe a crime is in progress.”

Anyone with information about the latest incident is asked to contact police with the reference number 19000460803.

#OpStock #OperationStock

Updated – Northamptonshire Police


A farmer who lost more than 25 lambs and ewes in the latest incident of illegal sheep butchery in Northamptonshire has told of his frustration and upset at the crime.

Patrick Green, of Church Farm, Harpole, has spent his life breeding and raising sheep with his father James.

Police officers called him in the early hours of this morning, Friday, August 30, after they discovered at least 26 of his lambs and New Zealand Suffolk x Mule breeding ewes had been killed and illegally slaughtered overnight in a field off Roman Road and Sandy Lane, between Duston and Harpole.

The incident is being treated as part of Operation Stock, the Northamptonshire Police investigation into illegal sheep butchery and sheep thefts in the county this summer.

Patrick said: “These sheep cost me a lot of money to buy, I’ve invested in them for the future of my farm and it makes me very sad to see them killed like this. I feel very empty.”

The third generation farmer has been breeding to improve his flock for the past five years, shaping his farming operation to solely concentrate on rearing sheep.

He said: “We rely entirely on our income from the sheep and what I’ve been breeding for the past five years means I’ve made progress for the ideal, healthy animal, one that’s welfare-friendly and easy to produce and rear.

“There’s lots of work gone into them to produce a sheep that’s as close to the ideal as possible.”

Speaking of the moment officers broke the news of the illegal slaughter, Patrick said his initial reaction was annoyance and concern about the cost, before the emotional impact hit home.

“I spend my life looking after my animals, to produce them for the food market healthily and safely, breeding for the future of my stock,” he said.

“I’ve never killed an animal, I spend my time looking after them so they have good lives, and then someone comes along and brutalises them like this, and I feel it very keenly.

“I look after 1,300 lambs on my own and care deeply for their welfare. Something like this really makes you lose your drive and lose heart.

“Farming is isolated enough as a profession. I’m not a wealthy businessman, this is a day-to-day business and I work hard for every penny I earn.”

Patrick has decided to speak out about his experience to raise awareness of the impact of illegal slaughter offences on farmers, and is encouraging anyone with information about the offences to contact police.

Anyone who sees anything suspicious in a rural area or around livestock is asked to call Northamptonshire Police on 101 quoting Operation Stock, or to call 999 if they think a crime is in progress.

#OperationStock #OpStock #RuralMatters

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