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Posted by W von Papinešu on April 18, 2003 at 16:21:56:
THE ARGUS (Sussex, UK) 16 April 03 Despair as tortoises stolen again (Karen Hoy)
A couple in Haywards Heath are moving house after their beloved pet tortoises were stolen for the second time in two years.
Thieves climbed into Nick and Kate Lockett's garden and snatched two of their three pets from pens.
The couple, of New England Road, Haywards Heath, fear the tortoises - Simon and Poppy - will die because they will not receive specialist care.
And Simon, who had been kept in isolation, carries a virus fatal to other tortoises.
Mrs Lockett said the couple had been living in Haywards Heath for almost four years and had suffered enough anti-social behaviour.
She said: "I've told my husband we're moving. I've had enough. I never thought we would have the tortoises stolen again. Then there's graffiti and a man who urinates behind the phone box near our house. I can't live in a house where my pets aren't safe."
The couple want to move to the Lewes area.
It is the second time thieves have stolen the couple's tortoises. Two years ago the couple lost William, Tetris and Alan. Following an appeal in The Argus, police were tipped-off and found William and Tetris at a man's home but Alan has never been recovered. No one was prosecuted for the theft.
The couple have contacted pet shops, animal rescue centres and police about the theft and are offering a reward.
Simon has a distinctive blue dot on the back of her shell. Anyone with information should call 0845 6070999.