AFTER two men allegedly stole sheep, their car – with the animals in a trailer – came to a dead standstill alongside a national road.

Passing cops were suspicious and they stopped and questioned the men.

They had run out of petrol and the police discovered they did not have a legal document to transport sheep.

The livestock was recovered, even before the owner knew that his sheep were gone!

Police spokeswoman Warrant Officer Lorraine Earle said the two men were arrested on the N6 near Reddersburg after cops spotted their white Nissan with its bonnet open.

“The trailer behind their car was crammed full of Dorper sheep.

“The cops inspected their removal certificate in terms of the Stock Theft Act and they suspected it had been forged,” Earle said.

In terms of the act, no person may transport, drive or convey any stock that he is not the owner of along a public road unless he is in possession of a certificate issued to him by the owner with certain information.

Cops followed up on the origin of the sheep and discovered they belonged to a farmer in the Smithfield area.

When they contacted the farmer, he did not even know that stock had been stolen from his farm.

The police confiscated the car and 13 sheep with an estimated value of R24 000.

The two men, aged 22 and 29, were arrested and three farmworkers aged 30, 34 and 39 were also bust on the farm and charged with stock theft.

“The five suspects will appear in the Reddersburg Magistrates Court soon,” Earle said.