Man fined after being caught ‘night hawking’ near Pulborough

A man who admitted night hawking near Pulborough – metal detecting on land without permission from the landowner - has been fined £1,560.

Tuesday, 1st June 2021, 3:48 pm

Police say that the man intended to steal anything he found in a field near Pulborough and was summonsed for going equipped to steal.

Officers revealed the incident today as Sussex Police’s Rural Crime Team marked its one year anniversary since being launched with the aim of cracking down on unlawful behaviour in isolated and rural communities.

Police say the team has ‘made great progress in tackling rural crime offences and building direct engagement with rural communities in Sussex.’

The team has a specialist focus on agricultural, equine, wildlife and heritage issues.

Chief Constable Jo Shiner said: “The team have had a busy first 12 months with positive results and great feedback from the rural communities.

“We’ve been actively encouraging members of the community to report crime and suspicious behaviour, because with this insight, we are able to deploy the team to where they are most needed in order to protect the most vulnerable.

“We have a great number of rural residents and businesses in Sussex and we have seen substantial results.”

Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said: “Through my ongoing consultations with local residents and organisations, including the National Farmers’ Union, I know that the Rural Crime Team are doing amazing work for our more remote communities.

“Rural crime is particularly worrying and, since the Covid-19 lockdown, there have been many disturbing reports of fly-tipping and expensive equipment theft.

“Feedback from the rural communities is that they feel their concerns and reports have been taken extremely seriously by the team and that proactive and robust action is being taken to keep them and their livelihoods safe and secure.”