on air now

Thieves using drones as Victorian farm thefts reach shocking level

More than two-thirds of Victorian farmers are falling victim to thieves.

“If two-thirds of city folk were being stolen from we’d hear a lot more about it, wouldn’t we.”
-Ross Stevenson

The largest-ever statewide rural crime survey, published by the Weekly Times, has revealed more than a quarter of farms have been targeted in the past year alone.

Thieves are predominantly helping themselves to hardware, farm tools, fuel and even livestock.

Victorian Farmers Federation Livestock President Leonard Vallance told 3AW Breakfast both petty criminals and organised crime gangs are responsible.

“There seems to be two levels of it,” Mr Vallance said.

“There certainly seems to be an ice epidemic. (Drug users) are more interested in the hand saws, chainsaws, fuel — that sort of thing.

“But there’s also organised crime groups travelling around stealing various pieces equipment, and some of those pieces of equipment are large tractors.”

Mr Vallance told Ross and John he recently installed an $8000 surveillance system after noticing a drone flying over his Ouyen property.

Click PLAY to hear the full chat