Belfast Telegraph

Thieves raid Northern Ireland farm of vehicles and valuables as family sleep

By Chris McCullough

A livestock auctioneer has slammed thieves who burgled his Omagh farm.

Richard Beattie woke on Monday to find burglars had taken his black Toyota Land Cruiser, a trailer, a kids' quad bike and a JCB Workmax utility vehicle.

They had also forced their way into kitchen while the family was asleep.

The three raiders were caught on the farm CCTV trying to steal another bigger quad bike, but were unsuccessful in removing it.

Mr Beattie had spent all week at the Balmoral Show on his trade stand.

He had just returned from dismantling the stand on Sunday night, leaving his trailers loaded with the equipment.

Mr Beattie explained: "We had enjoyed the Balmoral Show all week and had a trade stand there meeting our customers.

"All week we had been getting up early and coming home late from the show, so we were all very tired.

"Sunday night was the first night we could enjoy a long sleep.

"But I was shocked on Monday morning when I noticed the Toyota Land Cruiser had been stolen along with the trailer, JCB utility vehicle and the kids' quad bike."

The burglars broke into the kitchen through a sun room door before stealing valuables.

"Our children are aged six, nine and 12 and to think any of them could have come across the thieves if they had have gone to the kitchen for a drink of water or juice does not bear thinking about," he said.

"None of us heard a thing. We were all in deep sleeps.

"My CCTV in the shed picked up three intruders trying to steal more equipment.

"This all happened at 2.14am and it seems they were present on my farm for around 45 minutes.

"It is absolutely shocking and disturbing that people were in our house as we slept."

He is now trying to trace the movements of the thieves via other CCTV with the police.

He has also offered a substantial reward for information leading to the recovery of the machinery and the valuables taken from the house.

Mr Beattie added: "The thieves actually unloaded our flatbed trailer to get the JCB and quad onto it.

"The trailer was full of our stand material from Balmoral Show, but they needed it as the other trailer was too small to get the JCB utility vehicle onto.

"They also tried to steal the bigger farm quad, but couldn't get it on to the trailer and there were no keys for it.

"They stole the keys for the Toyota from the farm office, where they were kept secure."

Mr Beattie said there were no signs of any vehicle used by the culprits to enter his farm.

He has appealed for anyone with any information to contact him directly or to call the police.

Belfast Telegraph

Daily News Headlines Newsletter

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox.


From Belfast Telegraph