Scores of farmers in Northern Ireland are being tormented by “vile and abusive” phone calls, it has been claimed.
North Antrim UUP MLA Robin Swann, a member of the Stormont agriculture committee, said he was appalled to learn of the hurtful calls.
“Having faced dramatic drops in the prices they are receiving for their produce, terrible weather conditions that are affecting arable crops and potato harvests, the increased costs of fuel, feed and fertiliser, there are now farmers who are struggling not just financially, but mentally with the stress and strain,” he said.
Mr Swann said the crank caller asks the individual to listen while he rips up paper at the other end of the phone, and asks: “Did you hear that? That’s your farm profits and all you own being ripped up and thrown away.”
He added: “That is followed by laughter.
“I encourage anyone who receives one of these calls to report it to their telephone provider, the police and Ulster Farmers’ Union, so the severity of this nuisance can be traced.”