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Farmer hit by thieves again

BEA DOTTIN, [email protected]

Farmer hit by thieves again

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Thieves have wasted no time in striking farmer Michael Pile.
Only a few days after he was in last week’s SUNDAY SUN speaking about predial larceny, thieves dug up more than $2 000 worth of sweet potatoes and a small quantity of carrots.
“I lost these potatoes Wednesday night. They took 45 rods of sweet potatoes, about 450 running feet, more than 1 000 pounds in all, worth more than $2 000,” he said.
The tubers were taken from Barrows, which is part of Pile’s Brighton, St George plantation. He said he thought it was only going to get worse but he would continue farming.
“They come in here and maul [the sweet potatoes]. Something like this only discourages you from planting, but I can’t say I will stop; farming is in my blood.”
Pile said he had spent more than $10 000 hiring people to watch over his fields “from dusk till dawn” for the past two and a half months.
At Lower Valley, Pile said the small number of carrots taken appeared to be a test for the thieves.
“They were just taking a sample to see if it’s worthwhile to come back and take more; whether they’re up to their standards,” he said.
Recently, managing director of Armag Farms, Richard Armstrong, lost 1 500 rods of sweet potatoes. He said he suspected the sheer volume of produce being taken away meant there was someone “big in this country” behind it. (CA)