HEAVY vehicles carting livestock to CTLX at Carcoar have been stopped and searched as part of a major police operation targeting stock theft.
Police say Operation Stock Check is an an ongoing, proactive operation to prevent livestock theft by disrupting the movement of stolen stock around western NSW.
The operation allows officers to inspect vehicles carrying livestock to identify and target loads which may have been stolen.
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Operation Stock Check came to the Central Tablelands recently when the Central Zone Rural Crime Prevention Team, Western Region Highway Patrol and officers attached to Chifley Police District inspected vehicles travelling to saleyard facilities at Carcoar, Cowra and Forbes.
Police recorded two breaches of the Local Land Services Act and issued one direction to conduct maintenance on a vehicle.
Central Zone rural crime prevention team co-ordinator, Detective Sergeant Andrew McLean, said carriers could expect to see even more vehicles stopped in coming weeks.
"Police will be conducting checks on all vehicles that are moving stock, whether it be large trucks, small trucks, utes, trailers or horse floats," he said.
"I reiterate the fact that this operation is designed to target the criminal that preys upon the rural community in respect to rural crime, not farmers or livestock carriers who are doing the right thing," he said.
"We do encourage livestock carriers to make sure your paperwork is in order and your animals are fit to load. It is a simple check and you can go on your way."
Chifley Police District commander, Detective Superintendent Peter O'Brien, said his officers would keep stopping livestock vehicles to confirm the origin of the stock being moved.
"The Chifley Police District welcomes Operation Stock Check and our officers look forward to interacting with farmers and engaging with members of our rural community to ensure all animals being moved are not stolen livestock," he said.
Livestock theft has a significant impact on farmers across the western region.
Police have recorded 368 incidents of stock theft in the Chifley, Central North, New England, Oxley, Central West, Orana Mid Western and Barrier police districts in the past two years, worth more than $4.3 million.