Police in Argyll and West Dunbartonshire have set up a multi-agency group in a bid to tackle rural crime in the area.
The group, which is chaired by Detective Superintendent Yvonne Scott from L Division, includes members from National Farmers Union Scotland, Scottish National Heritage, Scottish Land and Estates, Forestry, Local Authorities, SEPA and COPFS.
At the group’s inaugural meeting earlier this month members discussed how to best deter and disrupt offenders. They also looked at ways to engage with members of the public to raise awareness of rural crime and encourage early reporting.
The group will meet up every quarter to review their progress, discuss recent crimes and plan ahead.
Detective Superintendent Yvonne Scott said: “Crime in rural areas can range from theft of agricultural machinery, vehicles, tools, livestock or fuel through to fire raising, housebreaking and vandalism.
“It can be perpetrated by opportunists or organised groups of criminals who travel the countryside specifically targeting rural locations.
“Rural crime can have a devastating effect on communities are we are focused on targeting offenders as well as working with local people to keep them and their property safe.”