Harwich: Stolen agricultural vehicles recovered after port operation
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Our rural engagement officers have recovered a telehandler and a van following an operation to detect stolen agricultural machinery being exported through Harwich International Port.
Working with the National Construction and Agricultural Theft Team (NCATT), our team spent two nights at the port inspecting and searching more than 100 lorries waiting to board North Sea ferries.
They also took the opportunity to speak to drivers about vehicle security and keeping their loads safe.
Intelligence received during the operation led to officers yesterday, Monday 18 December 2023, recovering a £40,000 Manitou telehandler from a Rochford industrial estate – it had been stolen from Great Braxted in 2020 – and a van in Stock, which had been stolen from Basildon last month.
PC Joe McCarthy, of our Rural Engagement Team, who led the operation, says:
“We know stolen agricultural machinery and vehicles are exported to Europe through our ports, including Harwich. “So we’ll be making regular visits to inspect and search lorries and their trailers for stolen vehicles and machinery. “We gathered a lot of information and we’ll be following up a lot of leads in the coming weeks. “We’ll also be getting the two vehicles we recovered forensically examined before returning them to their owners, which is always a nice thing to be able to do, particularly at Christmas. It was also great to recover vehicles stolen locally. “The operation was also a success in other ways as we were able to provide drivers with crime prevention advice and reassurance about keeping themselves and their vehicles safe on long journeys. “And it was good to work with NCATT and the National Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service, which provided us with intelligence in advance of the operation.”
No arrests have yet been made but inquiries are ongoing.
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