Pet thieves should get harsher punishments, says MP after spate of lockdown dog thefts

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An MP says he has been shocked by a recent spate of dog thefts, and has called for tougher sentences for those convicted of stealing pets.

Alberto Costa has written to Home Secretary Priti Patel saying harsher punishments should be given to those who take animals from their owners.

The Tory MP for South Leicestershire has acted after a number of local reports concerning dog thefts in recent weeks,.

Stolen animals include Logan, a three-year old cockapoo taken from a boarding kennel in North Kilworth, and eight miniature dachshunds taken from a home in Acresford, near Measham. There have been further reported incidents in Broughton Astley and Gilmorton, and on Wednesday night, five working basset hounds were stolen from kennels in South Kilworth.

Mr Costa, also a lawyer, said there had been a nationwide surge in such crimes during the pandemic driven by a demand for dogs, and has urged

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