Patrols quickly responded to a report of rural theft to recover suspected stolen metal in Maidstone.

At around 4.20am on Monday 20 June 2022, officers were called to East Farleigh church where four men were reported to be loading lead into a vehicle. 

Patrols attended the area and a dark green Rover 75 with foreign registration plates was pursued to Fullingpits Avenue, where the occupants left on foot.

Lead seized

A search of the area did not locate the suspects. However, the vehicle along with a quantity of lead, was seized.

Sergeant Darren Walshaw from Kent Police’s Rural Task Force said: ‘The vigilance of a local resident and the prompt response by one of our patrols ensured the stolen property was recovered.

‘We regularly give crime prevention advice to owners of isolated properties in rural areas that may be targeted by opportunist metal thieves. This includes security marking lead, installing an alarm and CCTV, and locking gates that give access to the venue.

‘Simple measures such as securely storing ladders, tools, wheelie bins and wheelbarrows can also restrict access to rooftops and reduce opportunities to move stolen metal from the scene.’

Witnesses who saw anybody acting suspiciously near East Farleigh church at the time of the incident, or the Rover 75 being abandoned in Fullingpits Avenue, are urged to contact the appeal line if they have not yet spoken to police.

Residents with private CCTV and motorists with dashcam are also asked to check for footage that may assist the investigation.

Anyone with information should call Kent Police on 01622 604100, quoting crime reference 46/118998/22.

You can also call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or by completing the online form on their website.

The Rural Task Force works closely with a number of partner agencies to address issues that blight communities including burglaries, livestock worrying and hare-coursing.

For further advice on rural crime prevention is available here

By Ed

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