A burglar who stole more than £55,000 worth of agricultural equipment from farms across Kent has been jailed.

Between 14 July 2022 and 6 March 2023 Jamie Broadmore stole the plant equipment from farms and businesses in AllhallowsShorneSandling, GravesendSouthfleet and West Malling.

During an eight-month period, Broadmore, from Strood, used recovery trucks to steal the vehicles before he sold the items on.

His crime spree started on 14 July 2022 after he stole a Ritchie Cattle Handling System worth £20,000 from a farm in Allhallows.

In the same month he stole a Spearhead Topper worth £19,000 from a farm in Gravesend and on 12 August he stole a Pottinger Hay Tedder, four 200 litre barrels of Adblue and 10 orange ratchet straps, totalling £16,000, from another farm in Gravesend.

Officers from the Rural Task Force began investigating the thefts and used ANPR technology to identify a recovery truck, which was seen on the M25 loaded with the stolen Spearhead Topper.

Further checks also revealed the same truck had been used to transport the other stolen items.

The truck was traced to a site in Gloucestershire and when the truck returned to Kent each time it was loaded with straw bales.

Officers visited the site and although no stolen equipment was found, there were several large bales of straw.

Broadmore continued to visit farms and businesses where he stole further items. On 8 March 2023 he targeted a farm in Southfleet where he stole 20 cattle hurdles and a post knocker – worth around £10,000.

Farm collage latest
L to R: Red hay tedder and silver cattle handling system

Officers from the Kent Crime Squad carried out further investigation and Broadmore was linked to the burglaries and thefts. Officers also found photos on a mobile phone belonging to him, which showed images of stolen agricultural equipment and his phone was also traced as being in the location as to where the burglaries and thefts happened.

Statements were also taken from people who had purchased the equipment in good faith, after the 37-year-old claimed his uncle had died and he was selling it on behalf of the family farm.

Broadmore was subsequently arrested by officers and he was later charged with six burglaries, three thefts, two frauds, acquiring criminal property and failing to provide a sample for a drug test.

He admitted five burglaries, two thefts and two frauds and on Monday 31 July 2023 he was jailed for two years and four months at Canterbury Crown Court.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Paul Marsh of the Kent Crime Squad said: ‘Broadmore was brazen in his criminality. He went to great lengths to conceal his actions and even fooled victims by telling them a false story in order to gain their trust and to encourage them to buy the stolen items.

‘These items were integral to these farms and businesses and his theft of the equipment caused them significant disruption. I’m pleased we have been able to return the stolen items to the victims and that Broadmore has been sentenced accordingly for his offending.’

By Ed

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