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IFA President Eddie Downey and Garda Commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan launch new farm theft prevention initiative at #ploughing14

The service provides farmers with a unique security ID, linked to their IFA membership number, to mark machines and equipment.

The initiative, which has been developed in partnership with An Garda Siochana and supported by FBD, allows Theft Stop to communicate with members in the event of farm machinery theft. A comprehensive database will also be maintained of all stolen equipment for members to view.

IFA President Eddie Downey said, “The increase in the theft of agricultural equipment is of concern to IFA. It is estimated that theft from farms has increased by 40% in recent years. For this reason, we have partnered with An Garda Siochana to develop the Theft Stop crime prevention initiative. I would encourage you to become part of this initiative by registering today. Stencilling your equipment will act as a crime deterrent and in turn make your farm more secure”.

Assistant Commissioner Jack Nolan said An Garda Siochana fully supports initiatives that prevent, deter and reduce crime on farms. Theft Stop is another excellent example of effective crime prevention through partnership. We look forward to working again with the IFA in tackling rural crime.

 

An Garda Síochána, the IFA, Muintir na Tíre and Neighbourhood Watch came together at the Ploughing Championships in Co Laois today (Tues) to launch a Community Text Alert initiative, which will see the Gardaí work in partnership with the organisations to prevent crime.

Speaking at the launch, the Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan welcomed the launch of the nationwide ‘Text Alert’ initiative. “The central role of An Garda Síochána is to protect the community, and ensure people are allowed to live peacefully. I am particularly pleased, therefore, to introduce this community-based initiative at the National Ploughing Championships – a family-oriented event that has resonance for local communities nationwide.

“Indeed, the efficiency of the ‘text alert’ system would not have been possible without the co-operation of our partners in the IFA, Neighbourhood Watch and Muintir na Tíre. The emphasis is on preventing crime through active partnerships with communities, and it is with the continued assistance of communities nationwide that we can all continue to combat crime.”

IFA President John Bryan said the initiative would utilise the branch officer structure around the country, which is underpinned by the Association’s 90,000 members.

“Our network will link up with the expertise of An Garda Síochána in an effort to improve communications and prevent crime through a community-based partnership. This is an important initiative to assist in crime prevention and must be supported by an increased level of Garda patrols in rural areas. From this week, each of our most senior officers at branch and county level will receive relevant texts from An Garda Síochána as part of Community Text Alert. This will provide a very important tool in community based crime prevention”.

The President of Muintir na Tíre John Hogan said the partnership between Muintir na Tíre and An Garda Síochána has worked positively in implementing the Community Alert Programme for the past 28 years and a similar partnership approach will ensure the success of this national Community Text Alert Initiative. He said this initiative would make a real difference not just in crime prevention but also in addressing the fear of crime which exists.
Pat Walsh from Neighbour Watch described the Community Text Alert initiative as an important crime prevention tool which has potential to make a real difference to quality of life for communities by connecting the work of An Garda Síochána with community groups in a real and tangible way.

Speaking after the launch of the Garda Síochána Metal Theft Crime Prevention and Reduction Plan today, IFA Environment + Rural Affairs Chairman Harold Kingston said a ‘track and trace’compliance scheme which compels all dealers to record the source of the scrap metal received is the most effective way to curb metal theft.

“The scheme, which is in draft legislation form, must have mandatory checks by local authorities and An Garda, which would include regularly inspections of records and premises.”

Harold Kingston said, “Valuable machinery is disappearing from farmyards and fields all over the country as part of work carried out by a sophisticated network of criminals. It is becoming increasingly evident that those behind the thefts have access to significant resources that enables them to steal large machines, and store them for some time before disposing of them. What is of most concern is the fact that over 60% of thefts and related offences remain undetected.”

The IFA Environment Chairman said, “If we cannot stop the theft of machinery at source, then we need an effective deterrent at the point of sale. It is not good enough for dealers to accept goods at face value without checking their ownership. A robust compliance system would close off the outlet for those responsible for the thefts, as dealers would face the consequences of receiving stolen goods.”


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