‘Nighthawks’: Tracking the criminals plundering ancient sites with the latest equipment
Camouflage jackets and clutching the tools of their trade, the three men who descended after dark on a Gloucestershire village appeared to be conventional burglars. But rather than thieving from a building, their target was an open field.
For four hours on a night in October, the trio brandished powerful metal detectors and trowels as they swept land on a farm south of Stroud before an accomplice arrived at 2am to take them and their plunder away. Were it not for clandestine night vision cameras recording their labours, the only evidence of this nocturnal larceny would have been the holes left by their probing in the ploughed ground.
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