Four men are in custody in a West Mercia Police Station on suspicion of the theft of dogs and animal cruelty offences, after the force received a phone call from a member of the public who reported suspicious activity.
Police were called to Bordesley Lane, Redditch, on Tuesday 8th December.
When officers arrived, they discovered a vehicle containing dogs and puppies as well as a large amount of cash.
As a result of the enquiries made at the scene by officers, a second vehicle was also identified.
When officers searched the second vehicle, they found more dogs and puppies.
Four men were arrested on suspicion of theft of dogs and animal cruelty offences.
They remain in custody in Redditch at this time.
Police have confirmed that a total of 44 dogs and puppies were recovered from the two vehicles.
They are currently being assessed by a mixture of local rescue centres, vet surgeries and the RSPCA where they will remain whilst investigations continue.
Detective Chief Inspector Joanne Woods said:
“We have recovered these puppies following vital intelligence from a member of the public.
“We are working hard to establish where these dogs have come from, as we suspect a number of them may have been stolen.
“At this moment in time we are not in a position to release details about each individual dog until they have all been assessed and scanned for microchips.
“We ask for the public’s patience whilst this takes place and if any of these dogs are identified as stolen, owners will of course be contacted in due course.
“With the national demand for dogs and puppies on the rise we would like to remind our communities to be extra vigilant when looking to purchase a dog or puppy.
“Make sure you do your research to ensure that you are buying from a legitimate breeder or rescue centre.”
“We would encourage any would-be dog owners to have a look at the Puppy Contract for useful information and resources about buying a new a pet”.
Anyone who might have any information about the incident is being asked to get in touch with West Mercia Police online or to contact PC Rosemary Cooper email: firstname.lastname@example.org or work mobile 07773044126 quoting incident 00181_I_08122020.
A spokesperson for West Mercia Police added: ‘investigations are ongoing and we are requesting information that may help us with our enquires; please do not contact us about rehoming or recovering dogs at this stage’.
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