Jamaica News: Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture, and Fisheries, Hon. J.C. Hutchinson, has emphasised the importance of farmers working with the police in the fight against praedial larceny.
He also encouraged the farmers to report farm theft to the police, while urging them not to take the law into their own hands.
“Report them quietly to the police. You have good police here, officers who you can trust and rely on. Even if it is your brother or sister, if you know they are thieves, report it. The ‘jungle justice’ is not going to work,” the Minister argued.
He was speaking during the launch of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), Farmers Watch group at the Dutch Hill New Testament Church of God in Ulster Spring, Trelawny on August 30.
Meanwhile, Minister Hutchinson reassured the residents that once the Agricultural Produce Act is amended, farmers will be able to recover the full cost of their produce, if stolen.
“This Agricultural Produce Act is one where we are going to stipulate that anybody who is caught can be charged up to $3 million. On top of that, if you lose a big animal costing $300,000 or you lose crop, we are now putting in the Act that, that thief must pay you back the $300,000 that you have lost,” he stated.
The Farmers Watch group project, is a collaboration between the police and citizens of South Trelawny, and is designed to bring both stakeholders together in a bid to reduce incidences of praedial larceny and other community issues.
Source: JIS News