Boris Johnson promises ‘ruthless’ crackdown on scourge of gangs stealing dogs after huge rise in thefts during pandemic #PetTheftReform


Writing in The Mail on Sunday, Mr Johnson – who owns a white, male Jack Russell cross called Dilyn.

• Demand for dogs during pandemic triggered huge rise in thefts, with some breeds fetching up to £4,000 each – four times pre-Covid prices

• Lord Chancellor Robert Buckland has set up taskforce

• PM said it would ensure ‘criminal justice system is dealing properly with anyone so malicious as to steal a dog’

“It is not just a question of coming down hard on violent and dangerous criminals. I believe strongly in the broken windows theory – that if you want to stop serious crime, then you must also be ruthless in dealing with offences that might seem second order to some, but which in reality cause huge pain and grief to the victims.

One crime type that has risen in prominence during the pandemic is, oddly, pet theft – mainly the stealing of dogs. At present this crime is far too often dismissed as relatively trivial – on a par, say, with shoplifting.

I don’t agree. That is why the Lord Chancellor Robert Buckland has set up the Pet Theft Task Force, to make sure that the criminal justice system is dealing properly with anyone who is so malicious as to steal a dog.

Since the start of the year, police operations in Hertfordshire have recovered 27 dogs and made three arrests; 26 dogs in Surrey, and three arrests; 83 dogs in Suffolk, six arrests; 80 dogs in Carmarthenshire, two arrests.

I can imagine that there may be the lips of some non-dog-owners that may curl in amusement at these statistics, and think that the police might be better employed doing other things.

That is to miss the point. If you are cynical and nasty enough to steal a dog, in an organised gang, then you will almost certainly be party to other types of crime as well.

This is a fight that can be won.”

From pet thieves to drug gangs we need to hammer down hard on criminals causing so much misery

Double page spread on Pet Theft in The Mail this morning, one article by the Prime Minister. #PetTheftReform

Boris Johnson backs pet theft taskforce, claiming ‘malicious’ dognappers could commit more ‘serious crimes’:

Boris Johnson backs pet theft task force:

Boris Johnson promises to tackle dog theft gangs with new taskforce:

Boris Johnson backs taskforce to combat surge in dog thefts: