Scottish Daily Mail

Taskforce set to tackle rise in pet thefts


A TASKFORCE has been set up by the Government to put a stop to ‘cynical and nasty’ pet theft.

Soaring demand for pets over lockdown is said to have led to a surge in criminals stealing dogs.

The taskforce will look into what contribute­s to the increase in thefts and recommend solutions to the problem. It will consist of officials from the Department for Environmen­t, Home Office, Ministry of Justice and police, and will seek input from animal welfare groups.

Last year an estimated 2,438 dogs were reported as stolen in the UK, according to research by Direct Line Pet Insurance.

The maximum sentence for theft of a pet is seven years.

Boris Johnson has said those who are ‘cynical and nasty enough to steal a dog’ in gangs are likely to be involved with other crimes.

The taskforce will publish its recommenda­tions in autumn.

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