A NORTHUMBRIA police officer is retiring after 30 years’ service.
PC Andy Swinburne has performed the role of wildlife crime officer on top of his Neighbourhood Beat manager duties in Berwick since April 2005.
He has been actively involved in many complex wildlife crime investigations covering a wide range of offences including the illegal trade of whales’ teeth and ivory, the illegal taking, possession and selling of wild birds’ eggs, badger sett interference, badger baiting and cock fighting.
He has also been involved in a series of preventative operations such as the annual roseate terns operation on Coquet Island near Amble.
PC Swinburne has built up strong links with partnership agencies under the Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (PAW), such as the RSPCA , RSPB , Defra , Natural England , Northumberland Badger Trust , National Wildlife Crime Intelligence Unit and Northumberland Wildlife Trust.
He said: “I have had a terrific time helping to protect our wildlife and wish to say thank you to all the partner agencies without whose assistance the fight against wildlife crime would be incomplete.”
PC Michael Leyborne will take over PC Swinburne’s role as wildlife crime officer for the south east and north Northumberland areas.
PC Steve Crane will assist PC Leyborne in the Berwick Police Sector.