Police have released photos of 48 dogs found in a raid on the West Meadows Travelers Site in Ipswich – in an attempt to reunite them with their owners.
The site, near Asda on Goddard Road, was raided on Saturday, March 20.
A total of 83 dogs of different breeds and ages were found after a large number of officers spent 10 hours at the site.
So far none of the animals have been reunited with their owners – the lack of identifying features and information making it difficult for the animals to return.
It is suspected that many dogs have been stolen outside of Suffolk.
Suffolk Police have now released pictures of 48 of the dogs in an attempt to find their owners and are asking those who believe one of the dogs may be theirs to contact them.
The remaining unidentified dogs are currently the subject of property inquiries or are young puppies.
All of the seized dogs are still part of the ongoing investigation and so far none of the 83 dogs have been returned.
Det Ch Insp Nicola Wallace, lead investigator for the operation, said: âWe look forward to hearing from anyone who thinks any of the dogs in the footage may be theirs.
“Over the past few weeks, officers have liaised with other police forces across the country, as well as conducted a number of other investigations, to determine where the dogs may have come from.”
Proof of ownership may include the following:
- Veterinary / vaccination records clearly identifying dogs.
- Photos of the dog with distinctive markings / scars / features.
- Full details of the microchip – however, please note that not all of these dogs have a microchip or have microchips which may not be properly registered.
- Other photos of the dog (s) that prove ownership during the dog’s lifetime.
- Full purchase details including details of where the dog was purchased and / or receipts.
- All records of reporting the lost / stolen dog (s) to the police or other websites / charities.
- Some dogs are grouped into possible litter groups, but this is not necessarily the case.
Following the West Meadows raid, six people, three men and three women were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to steal.
Four of the six – a 34-year-old man, a now 39-year-old man, a 41-year-old woman and a 46-year-old woman – have since had their bail dates extended until Thursday. June 17.
The other two have been released and will face no further action at this time.
Officers ask people to only use the email address and not to contact the gendarmerie contact and control room at 999 or 101.
The crime of dog theft skyrocketed in 2020 when the lockdown prompted more people to take pets – a demand that spiked prices and prompted criminals to steal for breeding or sale.