A campaign encouraging landowners to report criminality via Twitter and Facebook could help police to tackle countryside crime more effectively. Launched by Crimestoppers, the ‘Scene it. Herd it. Speak up about it. Anonymously’ message is to be spread via social media and local alert systems in a bid to reduce the £42.3 million that the NFU believes rural crime cost the UK in 2012.

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Once logged in via either of the sites, people will be directed to a webpage that discusses rural crimes, such as poaching, hare-coursing and theft of oil, metal and machinery, and enables them to report information anonymously via Crimestoppers (0800 555 111; www.crimestoppers-uk.org).

‘Criminals target isolated areas and hard-to-protect buildings looking for easily saleable items,’ says Chief Constable Simon Prince, of Dyfed-Powys Police. ‘By appealing for more eyes and ears, we can tackle these gangs.’ Crimestopper’s Roger Critchell adds: ‘No one has anything to fear as you will remain anonymous and you will not have to go to court or give a statement to the police.’

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