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Dyfed-Powys Police created “fake crime” to remove man’s firearms licence

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Steve Mantle

DYFED-POWYS Police have recently come under fire for allegedly recording non-existent crimes. 

67-year-old Steve Mantle of Port Lion, near Llangwm, reached out to the Herald with concerns about Dyfed-Powys Police. 

After seeing a previous Herald article, Mr Mantle shared his own difficulties with the police force and a blemish on his criminal record despite never being charged with any offence. 

Approximately two years ago, a familial dispute over money led to a complaint being made against Mr Mantle.

Both parties provided statements to the police and the Police took no further action. 

Shortly after, Mr Mantle was told his firearm licence was being revoked due to his supposed criminal record. 

He had the firearm licence in place so he could use a flare gun, if needed, on his sailing boat whilst at deeper sea levels. 

The incident on his criminal record appeared five days after the initial report to Dyfed-Powys Police over which the force took no action. 

All the official record states is “crime created”. 

Mr Mantle attempted to find out what the crime is, as he has never been charged and has no criminal convictions.

He has written to the chief constable, Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) and the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC). 

He claims he has either received no reply or been told that they are unable to investigate the incident.

Additionally, Mr Mantle has appealed the loss of his firearm licence, however due to the fact that this charge is on his file, he has lost his appeal.

Mr Mantle states he has been fighting this matter and tried to get clarification as to what he has been charged with for over two years and nobody within the police force or the governing bodies will give him an answer.

Steve Mantle on his yacht

The Herald reached out to Dyfed-Powys Police in the hopes of obtaining some clarification for Mr Mantle. 

They responded: “A formal complaint against Police in respect of this matter was received and the review of the complaint under the Police Reform Act 2002 by the Professional Standards Department was concluded and the outcome was formally communicated to the complainant along with their statutory appeal right to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC). The complainant exercised his appeal right to the IOPC who did not uphold the appeal.

“Following enquiries made after the arrest no further action was taken and the complainant was notified of this decision at the time. This position was also confirmed in the formal written response the complainant received as the outcome to his complaint.

“The review of his Firearms Certificate resulted in his certificate being revoked. This was a risk-based assessment which took account of a number of factors. The complainant exercised his legal right to appeal this decision at a hearing at Swansea Crown Court. The appeal was not upheld by an independent member of the judiciary who would have had full sight and knowledge of all matters relating to the case.

“The complainant is entitled to submit a Subject Access Request to the force asking for a copy of any records held in respect of himself on Dyfed Powys Police systems. A request can be submitted through the force website. He has been notified of this.

“There has been significant correspondence between the complainant and Dyfed-Powys Police and he has received a response to all matters he has raised with the force.”

Steve Mantle provided feedback to Dyfed-Powys Police’s statement. He said: “The response from D-P police was factually correct, but dishonest and misleading.

“The original incident DID result in a conclusion of No Further Action,  (NFA), which I accepted as true at the time.

“But D-P police then proceeded to take further action by creating a fictitious crime to revoke my firearms licence and remove safety equipment from my yacht.”

He added that the question as to what crimes were created remains unanswered, and the crimes that were shown to the court are unrecorded elsewhere.

He commented: “Seeing as any criminal record results in the automatic revocation of any firearms licence, there is clear written evidence of a mistrial.”

He also says he is at a complete loss to understand why Dyfed-Powys Police are being so coy and secretive on the matter. 

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Appeal following thefts from outbuildings and unattended vehicles

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DYFED-POWYS POLICE investigating a series of thefts that have been reported in the Pembrokeshire village of Spittal overnight.

People in the area near Haverfordwest have reported thefts from unattended motor vehicles, garden sheds and garages.

Officers this morning arrested a 38-year-old man from outside the force area on suspicion of theft. He remains in police custody at this time.

We would like to appeal to the residents of the area to check their vehicles and outbuildings to ensure they have not been the subject of a theft.

We would also like to hear from anybody who may have CCTV or doorbell footage of any suspicious activity overnight.

Sgt Paul Boorman said: “Officers are investigating the matter and we have someone in custody.

“We would now like people to check if they have also had anything stolen.

“Now is a good time to remind people of the importance of securing outbuildings and to make sure that vehicles are locked.”

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Sgt Boorman, either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

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Farming

Pembrokeshire Politicians Tuck into a Farmers Breakfast

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PEMBROKESHIRE Senedd Members Paul Davies and Samuel Kurtz joined local farmers and farming representatives for a breakfast to celebrate the Farmers Union of Wales (FUW)’s Farmhouse Breakfast Week 2023. Mr Davies and Mr Kurtz attended the breakfast event in Crundale to champion the benefits of a healthy breakfast and meet with local farmers to discuss the challenges currently facing the sector.

Mr Davies said, “It’s always a pleasure to attend the annual Farmhouse Breakfast and this year was no exception. I’ve always proudly supported Pembrokeshire’s produce and today was another excellent showcase of what our local farmers have on offer. We had some very interesting discussions and I’ll certainly be doing all I can to push the Welsh Government to better support our farmers as its Agriculture Bill makes its way through the Senedd. I’d also like to encourage the people of Pembrokeshire to support Farmhouse Breakfast Week too by buying local produce and enjoying a healthy Pembrokeshire breakfast – there’s plenty of excellent produce on offer, please take advantage and help support our farmers.”

Samuel Kurtz MS, local Senedd Member for Carmarthen West & South Pembrokeshire, added:

“Farming is often an isolated industry, and so the FUW’s Farmhouse Breakfast morning in Crundale Hall presented the perfect opportunity to get everyone together, in one room, talking and socialising.

“From council farm tenants to fourth-generation cattle farmers, everyone was brought round the table to taste some fantastic locally sourced produce.

“It was great to be there supporting the FUW and the DPJ Foundation, a fantastic charity that operates across the country, supporting those in agriculture and rural communities with their mental health.”

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Wales v Ireland travel advice from Transport for Wales

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TRANSPORT FOR WALES is offering rugby supporters rail and bus services for Wales’ opening game of the Six Nations against Ireland on Saturday (4 February).

Following a successful introduction for last year’s Autumn international series, a number of return coaches will be operating to compliment a full rail timetable. They’ll be running from Llanelli, Abergavenny, Cwmbran, Caerphilly and Pontypridd with prices starting at just £6 return.

To book TfW return coaches visit Coach | Wales v Ireland | Transport for Wales (tfw.wales)

More than 25,000 rugby fans are also expected to travel in and out of Cardiff by rail on Saturday, and customers are being urged to plan their journeys in advance and check before they travel.

Adam Terry, Head of Planning at Transport for Wales said: “We look forward to welcoming tens of thousands of rugby supporters onto our services for the first of Wales’ two home fixtures in this year’s Six Nations.

“We will have every available train in use and will be strengthening services to and from Cardiff to provide as much capacity as possible.

“Peak time rail services before and after the match are likely to be very busy, so passengers are advised to make use of earlier and later trains, or book one of the TfW coaches to ensure you have a guaranteed seat to get to the game and home afterwards.

“A queuing system will be in place at Cardiff Central after the game and we’ll be working alongside the other train operators to get passengers home as quickly and as safely as possible.”

Passengers are encouraged to familiarise themselves with the queuing system before travelling to the game.

TfW coaches will drop off and depart from Tresillian Way in Cardiff city centre, a short walk from the Principality Stadium. Return coach tickets must be booked in advance and existing rail tickets are not valid for coach travel. Capacity is limited and tickets will be issued on first come, first served basis.

Rugby supporters travelling to the Welsh capital on Friday 3 February, the day before the Wales v Ireland match, should be aware of industrial action taking by train drivers at 15 other train operating companies.

TfW staff are not involved in the strikes, but its services are likely to be busier than normal because there will be no Great Western Railway, West Midlands Railways, Avanti, or CrossCountry services operating on the Friday.

Great Western Railway services will be operating as normal on Saturday 4 February and they will once again be utilising their electric trains to provide extra capacity on the South Wales mainline.

For more information about the industrial action on Wednesday 1 and Friday 3 of February should visit Train strikes | Rail strike dates and industrial action | TfW

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