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Police in Gloucestershire are reassuring owners that they are monitoring reports of two suspicious men photographing horses across the country.

But they are also reminding people that it is not an offence to take pictures of animals.

There have been incidents up and down the country of two Eastern European men photographing horses. And while police are keen to speak to them to ascertain why the photos are being taken, they are reminding owners that no crime has been committed.

In a statement released on Tuesday, PC Sarah Ward, Gloucestershire Police Liaison to Horsewatch said: “It’s important to remember that no crime has been committed. It is not an offence to take pictures of animals.

“However we do understand that horse owners are concerned about the suspicious activity and we would like to take this opportunity to reassure them that we are monitoring the situation.”

The release comes following the news that a horse reported stolen from the Maisemore area in Gloucestershire has been found dead.

Last Wednesday, 11 June, police appealed for information following reports that a coloured two-year-old horse was missing from a farm in Maisemore.

But on Monday, police confirmed that the horse was found dead the following day and the circumstances are not considered to be suspicious.

In Merseyside last week, a man from Southport was ticked off by police for photographing horses.

The man was in fact a local artist and had also been photographing chickens, sheep and other animals. When confronted by police he proved his innocent intentions by deleting the photos from his camera.