Ru­ral al­liance to pool its ex­per­tise in crime­bust­ing

Art prize-giv­ing: Pri­mary pupils de­pict what they want to be as grown-ups Com­mu­nity: Safety and theft lead list of con­cerns

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - LOCAL NEWS - BY JAMIE ROSS

A new part­ner­ship to tackle ru­ral crime and im­prove the safety of com­mu­ni­ties across the north-east will be launched to­day.

The scheme will see the po­lice, an­i­mal char­i­ties and the lo­cal coun­cil work­ing hand in hand and will be un­veiled at the Royal North­ern Agri­cul­tural So­ci­ety show in In­verurie.

In all, 20 part­ners have pledged to share knowl­edge, ex­pe­ri­ence and ex­per­tise to tackle the of­ten crip­pling im­pact crime has on ru­ral ar­eas and the peo­ple who live in them.

Chief In­spec­tor Mur­ray Main will lead the North East Scot­land Ru­ral Crime and Safety Part­ner­ship. He said peo­ple liv­ing in ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties felt “more vul­ner­a­ble” in the wake of crime than those in other ar­eas.

“There are still too many se­ri­ous in­ci­dents on our road net­works and we need to work closer with ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties to tackle is­sues like agri­cul­tural safety, ac­quis­i­tive crime and live­stock wor­ry­ing,” he said. “By work­ing to­gether we can pro­tect the most vul­ner­a­ble and work hard to help those in ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties who need ad­di­tional sup­port.

“As we move for­ward, our strat­egy will de­tail the pre­ven­tion, in­tel­li­gence, en­force­ment and re­as­sur­ance mea­sures we can take col­lec­tively to re­duce crime by all the part­ners shar­ing their knowl­edge, ex­pe­ri­ence and re­sources.”

The Scot­tish En­vi­ron­ment Pro­tec­tion Agency (Sepa) has also signed up to the ini­tia­tive.

Terry A’Hearn, its chief ex­ec­u­tive, said: “Sepa is clear that en­vi­ron­men­tal com­pli­ance is non­nego­tiable and our of­fi­cers, who live and work in the com­mu­ni­ties they serve are firmly fo­cused on work­ing with part­ners to se­cure pos­i­tive out­comes.” Lorna Pa­ter­son, the man­ager of the Na­tional Farm­ers Union Scot­land, said: “Thefts of ve­hi­cles, tools and live­stock are preva­lent in our re­gion and the in­creas­ing num­ber of dog wor­ry­ing cases is equally con­cern­ing.

“NFUS has been work­ing with Po­lice Scot­land and oth­ers in the re­gion, shar­ing knowl­edge and build­ing upon in­tel­li­gence, with a view to mit­i­gat­ing this trend.”

The Royal North­ern Spring Show, which will take place at the Thain­stone Cen­tre, starts at 8am and will in­clude the sale of more than 90 pedi­gree cat­tle.

“By work­ing to­gether we can pro­tect the most vul­ner­a­ble”

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