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hedgerow pete 

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heres a completly HYPOTHETICAL situation, your veiws are welcome.


A beekeeper has four hives pinched, brood boxes and frames and the super frames but the super boxes and floors are left behind with the roofs,

because of the parts left behind we might be looking at someone with a good bee knowledge or there own equipment.

localy to the thieft there are four out apiaries and a good chance that our missing bees are there with the frames

After a midnight walk we have found our black felt tip marked frames inside someones hives.

now the problems,

by illegaly trespassing on someones land to gain proof we are now a criminal to,

and how do you expleain to the police that we have found out where our stolen bees are because we have tresspassed onto someones land at night also how do you show a police man your frames when he does not have a suit or veil.

or maybe it should go the opposite way , we steal them back??
 

darrenperrett 

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I would just phone the police to tell them i was going to retrieve my stolen hives.
I can`t imagine the police would have the slightest interest in trespass as someone may have passed you the information.
Either way, trespass or not, my property would be back with me that day.

Darren.
 

Midland Beek 

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by illegaly trespassing on someones land to gain proof we are now a criminal to,


Trespass is not a criminal act in the UK, and if you do trespass the Police can do nothing other than say 'bugger off'. Trespass is a civil matter and the landowner has only one way of prosecuting you and that is by contacting lawyers and paying for the prosecution himself. You do not have to give your details to a landowner if he/she catches you trespassing, but you have to give your details to a Police Officer if ever asked to do so.

You could report what you have discovered to the Police. But, I guess life would be a whole lot easier if you do not bother to do so.

And anyway, what are Police Officers supposed to do with the theft on unsecured agricultural property that you cannot decisevely prove was stolen? A felt tip pen mark will have your local Bobby laughing.
 

steveselvage 

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If they were mine they would already be back where they belong and the chap that had them would have a flat nose.

Call the police, say you had a tip off, they may eventually talk to the person, by the time they bother to get a search warrant the bees will have gone.

short sharp shock is the way then name and shame.
 

Heather 

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Shame I'm not nearer you, Pete- I'd help you get them back- :D - block them in at night- whoops, bees an all gone
 
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I know someone who writes their name on every frame in permanent marker. It would be difficult for someone to explain why these frames were found in one of their hives.

But back to the original question, the "trespass" is a minor issue compared to the theft so if you can prove the frames and brood boxes are yours then tell the police and even if you can't prove they belong to you tell the police anyway so the thief will at least know he has been rumbled.
 
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Take them back, lock the hives - and wait and see what the 'beek'... (seems wrong to call him one)...does.
 

Skyhook 

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Ethically, I would say he deserves a thick ear and a flat nose. Practically, I fear the repercussions would be harsher for the thumper than for the thief. Maybe recover the bees and frames and leave a note in their place, letting him know his identity is known/broadcast, and suggesting he may not wish to repeat the excercise?:smash:
 

freckledbeck 

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Unless the frames have the name of the rightful owner on them I wouldnt even bother to ring the police as the beek may say he marks his frames in the same way, which would make getting them back very difficult.
TBH I'd pinch them back asap, maybe taking extra frames for good measure, to teach the dishonest beek a lesson, and deter them from trying to steal again!
Good luck with whatever you decide to do.
 
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mbc 

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what about contacting your inspector - each inspection has a paper legal document
I wouldnt steal more back - two wrongs dont make a right - but I like the suggestion of taking whats yours back and leaving a note, reckon that would totally shit them up. I also agree the police would be totally useless untill you thumped the thief, then theyd have an easy colar - you not the thief !
 

oliver90owner 

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There is the consideration of some form of reparation. He has likely benefited from the use of your property and has reduced the scale of your operation by removal of your bees thus weakening your ability for split, hindering winter preparations, etc. Not just a simple 'return of property' here!

Regards, RAB
 
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Violence is not the answer. You could be in more trouble than him. Remove your hives and leave a note. Also broadcast his name on the forums and ensure all your local and county association members know. Be circumspect and don't accuse him of theft, but say that you recovered stolen equipment from his apiary. Ring the Bee Inspector afterwards and tell him that you have reports thet he has illegally imported bees and undeclared outbreak of foul brood. That should really p**s him off.
 

Polyanwood 

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Is it possible that he didn't steal them but received them as stolen goods? Still wrong, but how could you be absolutely sure that hives you bought weren't stolen?

I write on by frames and boxes with indelible pen and sometimes put by phone number on too. I varnish (Cuprinol Clear) over my name and phone number on the boxes because I think that if someone steals my hives and a beekeeper buys them, they will ring me. Might be naive.

I like the idea of taking them back and leaving a note.
 
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If deciding to go the route of the gendarmes, you could pre-empt by sneaking back into the field and marking them with your name (and perhaps one or two others as well :reddevil: )

Personally though I'd just go back in and help myself, and spread the word around in a non-defamatory way
 

hedgerow pete 

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as for my MADE UP QUESTION

if i was to speak to the police which of course i have not because i have no reason to . there answer would be some thing along the lines of.

as the frames are identified they can get the back for me but the bees are his as i cant identify them from his other bees, also polce men are NOT allowed to inspect hives because they dont have the correct meathod and risk assesments inplace nor do they have the correct ppe and training to deal with them, !!!

as for the bob on the nose i love that idea but i would loose not the thief, so whilst i am away all week in london there is nothing i can do , also it makes for a great alibi too!!

crime as i have already said on several threads and the security videos is best when no one else knows where your bees are, poly hive is saying the same to and we both know its the best meathod to use,

many thanks for all your replies, just thank heaven its all hypathetical?
 

deklan 

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pete you will not have to worry about a situation like this with your security in place (cameras, computers etc) but i agree if it happened to me i would go get them back and leave a note to show he has been rumbled
 

JamesB 

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as for my MADE UP QUESTION

if i was to speak to the police which of course i have not because i have no reason to . there answer would be some thing along the lines of.

as the frames are identified they can get the back for me but the bees are his as i cant identify them from his other bees, also polce men are NOT allowed to inspect hives because they dont have the correct meathod and risk assesments inplace nor do they have the correct ppe and training to deal with them, !!!

as for the bob on the nose i love that idea but i would loose not the thief, so whilst i am away all week in london there is nothing i can do , also it makes for a great alibi too!!

crime as i have already said on several threads and the security videos is best when no one else knows where your bees are, poly hive is saying the same to and we both know its the best meathod to use,

many thanks for all your replies, just thank heaven its all hypathetical?
Yep you are right the frames can be identified and the law would say that they are yours
I dont think its a H&S matter/ risk assessment for the police as a ex officer chasing scrotes etc over fields, walls, thorn bushes i never did a risk assessment on that,
however i doubt you would find a officer actually willing to stick their nose in a hive lol,

re the bees i would say it would be reasonable to assume that the bees came with the frame so if he was charged with theft of the frames any solicitor/lawyer worth their salt should be able to argue reasonable doubt if the criminal suggested they were his bee's,
At least you know the culprit, id write everything down in a book, take photos if necessary and if he repeats his thieving ways approach the police, at least they will have reasonable suspicion.

Also i would still report to the police as any crime unreported go's unrecorded and if bee keepers want it more recognised as a problem the police will only react if they have a high % of crimes reported which will make them do something about it :)
 

kazmcc 

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take the frames back, if he catches you :smash: him
 
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If I had stolen your frames and police came to me and said that you had found frames in hives on my property that had your name/address/postcode on them, I would say that you had written it all when you were poking around in my hives........and does Mr policeman really think that I am stupid enough to leave somebody's name on something that I had stolen..........

so rig a trap that tips the hives over when he goes near them...
 

hedgerow pete 

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just a little update and some more information for you all. a bit long winded but it does start to make sence honest!!

when we found out in the spring that my son has a brain tumour i put the whole of the family life on hold even the bees were cleared out to make way for solid time with my family so they were transported to shropshire to someone i belived was able to look after 7 full sized hives and when they were set up at his so called out apiary i went home and never thought of them again.

unfortunutly this person waas unable to look after them properly and abandonded looking after them when i went to collect them several weeks ago we fouind that this person had not been to see them for almost three months!!!!

what we arrived to find was three hives of bees not seven and all had swarmed and were in a very poor state and some of the other four hives were scattered around with all there contents missing.

this is when the police were first called in for a theft, as ever nothing realy came of it.

so using google maps and a lot of days out we managed to find most of the beeks in a ten mile radius, only a local would realy know where his person had his out apiary.

after a few midnight walks as it were we managed to find most of my missing 40 frames inside a beeks apiary and some of the missing bee hive's

we did call the police who as ever wen't bothered so we made a few complaints and thats when we found out that they would only call to collect the frames not the bee's.

that is as far as we can go as the cps ( clown prosecution service )will go with this case.

today we sent in three beeks, two police men and a bee inspector and we have removed all 44 frames and the bee hive componants and he has generously donated four bee hives of bees to us.

we are not prosecuting or will there be any charges for this particular theft but whilst there the police did a search and have found several items that match the local stolen lists inc, on massy 135 tractor a caravan and several contents from other peoples sheds etc.

the police WILL be charging him with reciving stolen goods but not theft.

because of on going issues with the police i have been asked to not identify this person or the area he comes from. when he does go to court and is sentenced or freed i will post it then .

i was stupid to relie on the friend to look after the bees because nornaly only me and god know where my bees are. the only exception to this steel rule is the bee shed but i decided when i started using it for the videos that i was going to have to allow that risk.

the only down side is the recovered bees are now at a new location under going tessting for any deseases before being returned back to my bee shed where they will be staying.

personly i am more of a loaded shotgun in your face asking nice4ly sort of person that the correct way of today but it would not work on this idiot so the best way was the correct way with police on our side.

on a lighter note we had to supply a risk and meathod statement to the police sercive and we had to supply them with a disposible bee suit each, and watching them walkk around all day with those on i would have paid momey to have been there today to see it , ha ha ha ha
 

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