Calls for police to get tough with rural crime

Filed under: Quad Bikes News — Rick on February 15, 2012

Ulster farmers are calling for police to get tough with rural crime following the news from an insurance company that theft of machinery and quad bikes cost farmers more than £11 million over the past three years through farm quads theft along with machinery.

One Ballyclare man, Mr Mark Wilson, became an unfortunate victim to theft in 2009 when his Yamaha quad bike was taken, however, he was among the lucky ones who got it back a year later after seeing it for sale on an internet auction website. The quad bike was one among three ATVs that were stolen from the family farm, the others were never located.

Mr Wilson saw the bike online and his suspicions were aroused due to the fact of the photo quality being poor and there was no contact number or minimum price set for the used ATV. He reported it to the police who then recovered the quad bike who then said that the matter ended there. However, not satisfied with this he complained and asked that the police undertake a proper investigation to find out how the man, who had put the quad up for sale, had acquired it. Police said they could not charge the man who was selling it as he said he purchased it from travellers for £400. The quad bike was worth £6,000 and Mr Wilson pointed out that he had bought the bike for what was obviously a very low price and without a tax book or key and it was obvious it had been hot-wired. Therefore, he should have known it was stolen and not legitimate. No one was charged over the theft and Mr Wilson took the case to the Police Ombudsman.

Theft of farm quads is rife in rural areas. Farmers rely on quad bikes for getting around their property and delivering feed to animals. If they lose their transport it can greatly affect the running of the farm.

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