Police crackdown on poachers

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Poachers in Morpeth have been targeted in a crackdown on rural crime.

Police took action after residents and landowners raised concerns about trespassers poaching on their land.

The culprits purported to be shooting game legally, but were found to be unlawfully going onto private land to poach and steal.

Morpeth Neighbourhood Policing Team worked with local land owners and game keepers, carrying out regular patrols in the rural areas of Morpeth to prevent further trespassing and thefts, as well as to gathering information and providing reassurance to the community.

So far, nine gamekeepers have joined the initiative, which has seen vehicles stopped and checked and hunters stopped and spoken to by police to ensure their activity was legal.

Morpeth Neighbourhood Inspector Sharon Wilmore-Greaves said: “Trespassing and poaching can have a huge impact on our rural communities, whose livelihoods rely on the produce of their land.

“Most criminals who commit crime in rural areas will travel from outside the area, with no consideration for the damage and harm they are causing.

“We will continue to target poachers and would continue to urge the local community to work with us and report anything that seems out of the ordinary or suspicious.

“Likewise, we’d continue to urge those who are legally shooting on land to let us know, as required by their licence.”

To report information to the Morpeth Neighbourhood Policing Team ring Northumbria Police on 101, ext 69191, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.