POLICE in Herefordshire have been cracking down on rural theft and burglary in a special operation.

West Mercia Police said officers across north Herefordshire had taken part in Operation Jetwing after a recent rise in theft and burglary.

Operation Jetwing on Thursday (December 15) saw local safer neighbourhood teams (SNT), the operational policing unit (OPU) and the rural and business crime teams focussing on crime detection and prevention of agriculture machinery and trailers in Leominster, Kington and the roads and villages in between.


Police said Herefordshire has seen a slight rise in the theft of commercial equipment such as trailers over the last few months.

Industrial trailers are most commonly used by businesses and farming, with the average value around £5,000 each, officers said.

Once stolen, they say they are sold very quickly on social media marketplaces and through established group chats.

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Sergeant Nicola Holgate said: “Organised Crime Groups (OCGs) are behind the vast majority of these thefts, stealing from farms and homes in Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Shropshire.

"As well as their other criminal interests stolen plant machinery forms a significant part of their operations.

“Today’s operation was invaluable in reassuring the public and local businesses that we are stopping vehicles, checking they are not stolen and checking that all vehicles are roadworthy and legal."


She added: "Life and work is a challenge for us all, and for the farming community days like today when it's -9C to lose specialist equipment may mean losing livestock and livelihoods.

“Herefordshire, like much of West Mercia, is very rural and farming is at the heart of this county."