Thames Valley Police is currently investigating the distribution and use of illegal pesticides, including counterfeits, across Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Berkshire.
Illegal pesticides have been found in increasing amounts across the UK and Europe and Thames Valley Police has a particular interest in illegal pesticides not just because of the risks they pose to the rural communities but the links to organised crime gangs. There is growing evidence that the illicit activities of such gangs finance other serious crimes such as human trafficking and international terrorism.
It is not yet known to what extent, if any, illegal pesticides are being sold within our rural communities. Gathering intelligence and information is a vital part of the investigation, which is where you come in.
If you notice anything suspicious about pesticides you have either been offered or purchased, please call the 24 hour non-emergency number 101 and mention ‘Operation Silo’.
Things to look out for:
- Does the product look or smell unusual?
- Have you been offered a product which has been described as the same as another but at a discounted rate?
- Have you been sold a product because your first choice was ‘out of stock’?
- Do you have any feelings that a product you have bought isn’t quite right? Are there any unusual symptoms or irregularities?(clog spray jets / nozzles) etc
- Is the packaging unusual or not what you would expect?
If you do not want to speak to the police, you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.