In a bid to curb the alarming rise of praedial larceny, the government is set to escalate police presence in farming communities, announces Agriculture Minister Floyd Green. The move comes as part of a comprehensive effort to staunch the tide of agricultural theft, particularly targeting the vital local food supply. 

Minister Green, addressing stakeholders at a recent Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) Expo, pledged to forge strategic partnerships between his ministry and law enforcement in farming communities. This collaboration aims to fortify existing measures and ensure enhanced protection for agricultural produce and livestock. The announcement coincides with the grim revelation that praedial larceny is costing Jamaican farmers a staggering 6 billion dollars annually. 

“Crime will take no foothold in the breadbasket parish,” declares Member of Parliament for South West St. Elizabeth, Floyd Green, as he takes a resolute stance against praedial larcenists. The agricultural community has been grappling with the persistent threat to its economic stability, prompting these proactive measures to safeguard the industry. Minister Green’s commitment to this cause extends into the upcoming year, with plans to implement partnerships with the police force firmly in place. The objective is clear – to create a robust defense against the illicit activities that have been compromising the livelihoods of farmers nationwide.

In a significant development, lawmakers have recently unveiled legal amendments designed to empower the prosecution of praedial larcenists under anti-gang legislation. The move, set in motion on December 15, has garnered support from Police Commissioner Major General Antony Anderson, who sees it as a crucial step toward dismantling the criminal networks behind these thefts. Since 2022, authorities have been proactive in addressing the issue, conducting over 3000 intelligence-led operations focused on praedial larceny.

This intensified effort has resulted in 142 arrests so far, signaling a tangible impact on criminal operations. As the government strengthens its resolve to combat praedial larceny, these comprehensive measures are poised to reinforce the resilience of farming communities. With the specter of crime looming over the agricultural landscape, the increased police presence aims to reassure farmers and citizens alike that their food supply will be protected from the clutches of thieves. 

Reporter: Ramon Gordon

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