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      Border Guard Finds 200 Goats Stolen by PA Arabs

      The Border Guard police have received a Certificate of Honor from dairy farmers for finding a herd of 200 goats, stolen by Arabs in Samaria.
      By Hillel Fendel
      First Publish: 2/4/2009, 11:06 AM

      The Border Guard police in northern Israel have received a Certificate of Honor from cattle raisers for finding a stolen herd of 200 goats.  The herd had been stolen from their western Galilee farm by Arabs in Samaria.

      Border Guard Commander Yisrael Yitzchak received the award from Chaim Dayan, head of the Beef Cattle Breeders of Israel (BCBI) organization, and Shaike Drori, Director of the Cattle Council.

      The award recognizes the Border Guard’s “professional, complex and quick work in fighting the scourge of agricultural theft and locating the goats stolen from Ein Kamonim Farm” last week.

      The goats, of the prime Alpine dairy breed, were stolen by the PA Arabs in a clever ruse. Amiram Avrutzki, owner of the Ein Kamonim Dairy Farm, said the robbers “neutralized the electronic fence and the advanced alarm system, and then led the goats about a kilometer [5/8 of a mile] away to a special ramp generally used by the IDF for loading heavy equipment onto trucks. They used the ramp to load the goats onto their trucks, and from there they drove home to Samaria.”

      When news of the theft became known, the security forces acted quickly, and within a few days, acting on the assumption that Arab shepherds were the thieves, found the missing herd. 

      National Plague - Up 20%
      The Supreme Court has termed the phenomenon of agricultural theft a “national plague.” Dayan said recently that such theft has risen 20% over the past year, with 2,200 incidents in 2008.  In January alone, 300 calves were stolen, a 60% rise over January 2008.  Each calf can be worth up to 3,000 shekels ($750).

      Commander Yitzchak said at the award ceremony, “We relate to every case like this as if it were a murder case, including the use of helicopters and special units when necessary.”

      Dayan said he appreciates the Border Guard police and Northern District State Prosecution for taking on this case.