Stolen tractor recovered

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Three suspected tractor thieves have been arrested after a police pursuit.

At about 7.30pm on Saturday June 15, North Yorkshire Police were alerted to the theft of a New Holland 7840 tractor from a farm near Tadcaster which was believed to have been stolen at around 5pm that day.

At 9.30pm police in West Yorkshire received a report of a tractor being driven erratically in Castleford.

Officers from both forces attended and spotted the tractor being driven at speeds of around 25mph, the wrong way round a roundabout and off-road. The tractor stopped after a brief pursuit, and three men made off from the vehicle.

Three men aged 17, 18 and 28 were arrested nearby a short time later – all on suspicion of theft of a motor vehicle, and the 28-year-old also on suspicion of failing to stop, dangerous driving, drug driving and driving while disqualified. They have been released under investigation while enquiries continue.

The tractor was recovered and returned to its rightful owner in North Yorkshire.

Officers from North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Taskforce have stepped up patrols in the area from which the tractor was taken.

Inspector Jon Grainge said: “North Yorkshire is one of the safest places in the country, but it’s important we stay vigilant and do everything we can to keep people and businesses safe, particularly in rural areas.

“Thanks to Operation Woollen, every farm in the county can receive a free crime prevention pack, and be offered a security survey by a trained expert.

“In addition, we will be promoting dot peen property marking, and encouraging businesses to sign up to the North Yorkshire Community Messaging system.”

For advice visit www.northyorkshire.police.uk/plantsecurity.