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Thieves steal Land Rover Defender 90 belonging to South East 4x4 Response team volunteer from Ashford

By Vicky Castle

Thieves have stolen a beloved Land Rover belonging to a volunteer member of the South East 4x4 Response and rescue team.

Owner Louise Wright, 31, of Mabledon Avenue, Ashford, discovered her Land Rover Defender 90, which has a snorkel, roof rack and winch bumper, had gone missing from the road behind her house over the weekend.

The South East 4x4 Response team are a group of 4x4 owners who voluntarily assist the emergency services, Kent search and rescue teams and local councils during times of bad weather or in places that are difficult to access.

South East 4x4 response Volunteer Louise Wright discovered her Land Rover Defender 90 had been stolen last weekend

She said: “I signed up with the response team about a year ago and have been training and getting to know them all.

“It is the vehicle that I had always wanted. We had done a lot of work on it and I have had it for quite a few years.

“I joined the team because I had the car and I just wanted to help, so I am devastated.”

Mrs Wright believes the theft of her Defender 90 was targeted and planned

James Chalkley, vice-chairman for South East 4x4 Response team, said: “Louise is one of the few female members of our team and it is a terrible shame.

“It is one less vehicle on the road, and in a search and rescue case that can mean the difference between finding someone or not.

“I certainly hope that these people or person gets caught and in the hope it isn’t already halfway across Europe.

“Please be vigilant and keep an eye out for the Land Rover.”

Police believe Land Rover Defenders are targets for thieves to enable them to commit further crimes such as removing cable or metal.

A spokesman for Kent Police said: "Police were called to reports of a missing blue Land Rover Defender, which was believed to have been taken from a rear driveway in Essella Road, Ashford, between 4pm 23 August and noon 25 August.

"Enquiries are ongoing."

Anyone with information should contact Kent Police on 101.

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