Two men jailed after thefts from farms in Hadleigh area

By Derek Davis

27th Sep 2022 | Local News

Jailed: James Mitchell and Luke Booth (Picture credit: Suffolk Police)
Jailed: James Mitchell and Luke Booth (Picture credit: Suffolk Police)

Two men who stole agricultural equipment and machinery from premises across south Suffolk, including Hitcham and Hadleigh, have been jailed for four years six months each.

James Mitchell, 35, and 22-year-old Luke Booth, both of Woodlands Way, West Meadows, admitted conspiracy to steal over a three-month crime spree last year.,

The pair's haul, valued at £133,000, included the theft of three motorcycles, a tipping trailer, a leaf blower, a wood chopper, a flatbed trailer and a quad bike.

Hadleigh Enterprise Park and Loose Fram in Hitcham were among 20 premises targeted by the duo, with a quad bike taken from the farm.

A quad bike was among vehicles stolen

Jailing the men at Ipswich Crown Court, recorder Sarah Przyvylska praised Suffolk police officers for their investigation and the criminals were caught through the vehicles they used to commit the offences, cell site analysis and by an investigator identifying them from CCTV footage.

The 20 premises targeted by the men included Boydland Farm, off London Road, Capel St Mary, during which a trailer, a ride-on mower, a hand mower, a hedge trimmer and a leaf blower were stolen; Public Sewer Services at Green Farm, Great Finborough; A E White Surfacing Ltd, Green Farm, Great Finborough; the Engine Room at Snape Maltings during which a utility vehicle was stolen; Loose Hall Farm, Hitcham, during which a quad bike was stolen; a farm in Vicarage Lane, Wherstead; Hadleigh Enterprise Park; Daltons Farmhouse, Plough Lane, Leavenheath, during which three strimmers, three chainsaws and six leaf blowers were stolen and Akenham Hall Farm during which a Land Rover Discovery was stolen.

Simon Gladwell for Mitchell said his client, who has four children, wanted to put his criminal past behind him as soon as possible and to start a crime-free life.

Mitchell asked for three further offences to be considered and Booth asked for 23 further offences to be taken into consideration.

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