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Designed by John Minary to prevent the theft of lead from the roofs of churches and heritage buildings, Trace-in-Metal has subsequently been adapted to help in the fight against rural crime.
Its sister product, TecTracer, is being used by an ever-growing number of farmers to protect sheep, farm machinery, vehicles and even beehives, whilst livery yards and stables are turning to it to guard saddles and other valuable equestrian equipment from thieves.
Whilst Trace-in-Metal uses ballistics to fire thousands of microdots into metal sheets “marking” them with a unique identifying code, TecTracer uses raddles to ingrain thousands of coded markers into a sheep’s fleece and is also applied using a spray on farm equipment and vehicles, including Land Rovers.
Additionally, signs advertising the TecTracer identification process are positioned around farm buildings and fields, and these are combined with an e-alert early warning system linked to the police, farms, abattoirs and auction houses.
Mr Minary – who partnered a Swedish ballistics expert to create the system – attended the National Police Chief’s Council conference with a “protected” LandRover Defender.
The event, which was held in Harrogate Pavilions, was attended by scores of police chiefs and police and crime commissioners, who saw the launch of the National Rural Crime Strategy and the National Wildlife Crime Strategy.
It also came just days after the National Rural Crime Network published the findings of a crime survey which revealed that 69 per cent of farmers and rural business owners said they had been a victim of crime in the past 12 months.
Mr Minary said:
This conference was the perfect platform to showcase TecTracer as it put our crime prevention system in front of high ranking police officers and PCC’s.
Last month we were invited by Police Scotland to join them on their stand at the Royal Highland Show, and there was real interest in TecTracer, particularly from those who had previously suffered at the hands of criminals.
Theft of livestock, vehicles and machinery is an ongoing problem across the whole UK, but more so in the more rural counties such as North Yorkshire.
One of the key factors in this worrying scenario is a depleting police presence, which is borne out in the findings of the rural crime survey. Because of this, farmers, landowners and stable owners need to be able to protect themselves and their property as best as possible.
I’m delighted to say that more and more people now see TecTracer as an efficient and effective weapon in the fight against crime.