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Four men have been charged with hare coursing offences after we received several reports from the Common Drove area of Crowland.
Our officers, supported by Cambridgeshire rural crime officers, attended Common Drove at around 10.30am on Sunday 12 March.
The four men were located in a field, arrested and later charged. Officers seized their vehicle and four dogs.
Michael Chaulk, aged 25, of Bittams Lane Chertsey, Surrey was charged with:
Edwards Connors, aged 21, of Rectory Lane, Banstead, Surrey, William Smith, aged 20, of Ecton Lane, Northampton, and a 17-year-old boy were each charged with the following:
They have been released on bail and will appear at court in the near future.
Chief Inspector Steve Williamson said: “One of our force priorities is hare coursing and our Rural Crime Action Team continue to take robust action against these offences.
“Hare coursing is criminal, as well as cruel and we will continue to work with communities and partners to tackle the problem.
“The majority of those we have arrested in recent months have been from outside of the county. These suspects are often linked to organised crime groups as well as hare coursing.
“Hare coursers will often seek to commit other criminal offences against the community as a whole. There has also been far too many occasions where hare coursers are also placing the public and police officers in real danger due to dangerous driving and failing to stop for police.
“A message to anyone thinking about hare coursing in Lincolnshire: We will adapt our tactics and resources, and with the help of the people of Lincolnshire, we will arrest you, we will seize your vehicle, seize your dogs and work tirelessly to ensure a successful prosecution.”
“I would urge the public to be vigilant. If you spot any potential hare coursers, please contact us immediately.”
Our Rural Crime Action Team (RCAT) has been put in place to patrol and target rural crime including hare coursing, wildlife crime, arson, burglary and theft. They also offer crime prevention advice.
The key objectives for the team were set after consultation with our key partners and are documented in the Rural Community Safety Plan. You can read more about the team here: New Rural Crime Action Team formed | Lincolnshire Police (lincs.police.uk)
As part of our force priorities, we continue with Operation Galileo to tackle rural crime. Operation Galileo is supported by a total of 32 forces nationally and works with partner agencies to deter and disrupt criminality such as hare coursing.
We continue to investigate all reports of rural crime.
However, we want to warn members of the public not to approach anyone you suspect of hare coursing, and please do not put yourself at risk.