Stolen dogs investigation finds 83 pets in Ipswich raid

 Eighty-three dogs believed stolen have been seized in a police raid.

The animals were found during an almost 10-hour search of West Meadows travellers' site in Ipswich on Saturday.

Officers, who found dogs of various breeds and ages, arrested six people at the site on suspicion of conspiracy to steal.

Suffolk Police said it was working with other forces to reunite pets with owners as soon as possible.

Det Ch Supt Eamonn Bridger said such thefts had "become a particular problem across the entire country since the first lockdown began 12 months ago".

"I know many victims of these crimes will be anxious to know whether or not we have recovered their pet.

"I would like to reassure them that we are working as quickly as possible to identify who all the dogs belong to and aim to reunite them with their owners as soon as we can."

Two men aged 34, a 38-year-old man and three women aged 35, 41, and 46 remain in police custody.

Officers also found "multiple breaches" of Covid-19 regulations at the site, and issued fines to four people, with several others given dispersal notices.

A dispersal order is now in place to "minimise the likelihood of any further crime or disorder", the force said.

The order gives officers the power to exclude a person from an area for a period of up to 48 hours.

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