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No inflation? In north of England, they say: Baaah, humbug

Section: Daily Dispatches

UK Ram Raiders Flock to Rustle Sheep

By Andrew Bounds
Financial Times, London
Friday, December 3, 2010

Criminal gangs targeted manhole covers and copper wiring when rocketing Chinese demand rendered them valuable commodities. Now they have a new target: sheep.

North Yorkshire has been hit by at least three large thefts in the Dales in recent weeks. In the past year there have been eight cases of sheep rustling in the county and three of cattle theft, with goats, dogs, poultry, and horses also being stolen, police say.

In the worst case 271 sheep were taken from fields in Lancashire this year.

The rise in rustling has been driven by the same kind of global trends that made mundane objects such as manhole covers lucrative criminal cargo when steel prices soared.

... Dispatch continues below ...


Prophecy Receives Permit To Mine at Ulaan Ovoo in Mongolia

VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Prophecy Resource Corp. (TSX-V:PCY, OTCQX: PRPCF, Frankfurt: 1P2) announces that on November 9, 2010, it received the final permit to commence mining operations at its Ulaan Ovoo coal project in Mongolia. Prophecy is one of few international mining companies to achieve such a milestone. The mine is production-ready, with a mine opening ceremony scheduled for November 20.

Prophecy CEO John Lee said: "I thank the government of Mongolia for the expeditious way this permit was issued. The opening of Ulaan Ovoo is a testament to the industrious and skilled workforce in Mongolia. Prophecy directly and indirectly (through Leighton Asia) employs more than 65 competent Mongolian nationals and four expatriots. The company also reaffirms its commitment to deliver coal to the local Edernet and Darkhan power plants in Mongolia."

The Ulaan Ovoo open pit mine is 10 kilometers from the Russian border and within 120km of the Nauski TransSiberian railway station, enabling transportation of coal to Russia and its eastern seaports. Thermal coal prices are trading at two-year highs at Russian seaports due to strong demand from Asian economies.

For the complete press release, please visit:

The weak pound means many sheep are being exported, while traditional sellers such as New Zealand are struggling with drought and sending what lambs they do have to newly wealthy Asia. This is helping push up prices at home.

In September police stepped up patrols in Cumbria after thefts in the fells around Ulverston and Windermere. Feeding troughs have also been stolen, possibly for use in fattening up the animals before selling them to backstreet butchers.

Police say the gangs may use sheepdogs and have trucks capable of carrying dozens of animals, making them resemble legitimate farmers.

PC Alison Taylor of Cumbria police said: "The area where these sheep have been stolen is isolated, fenced fell land which covers hundreds of acres, making them an easier target."

Andrew Jones, MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough, said 133 animals had been taken in four incidents in his constituency in the past few months. "People in our agricultural sector have very low incomes and it is hard that just as prices rise they become a target for thieves."

The animals might be hard to sell because they are tagged to make them traceable from their field of origin, and police have asked the public not to buy meat of uncertain origin.

NFU Mutual, which insures two-thirds of farmers, said cases were at a 10-year high. NFU Mutual's Tim Price said: "We have seen a resurgence. We have had dozens of claims this year after about half a dozen last year."

He noted that some sheep had been butchered in fields, making the meat dangerous to eat.

"The thieves know the price of commodities very well," he said. "When meat prices go up they take livestock. When scrap metal prices go up farm gates go missing."

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Sona Drills 85.4g Gold/Ton Over 4 Metres at Elizabeth Gold Deposit,
Extending the Mineralization of the Southwest Vein on the Property

Company Press Release, October 27, 2010

VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Sona Resources Corp. reports on five drillling holes in the third round of assay results from the recently completed drill program at its 100 percent-owned Elizabeth Gold Deposit Property in the Lillooet Mining District of southern British Columbia. Highlights from the diamond drilling include:

-- Hole E10-66 intersected 17.4g gold/ton over 1.54 metres.

-- Hole E10-67 intersected 96.4g gold/ton over 2.5 metres, including one assay interval of 383g of gold/ton over 0.5 metres.

-- Hole E10-69 intersected 85.4g gold/ton over 4.03 metres, including one assay interval of 230g gold/ton over 1 metre.

Four drill holes, E10-66 to E10-69, targeted the southwestern end of the Southwest Vein, and three of the holes have expanded the mineralized zone in that direction. The Southwest Vein gold mineralization has now been intersected over a strike length of 325 metres, with the deepest hole drilled less than 200 metres from surface. "The assay results from the Southwest Zone quartz vein continue to be extremely positive," says John P. Thompson, Sona's president and CEO. "We are expanding the Southwest Vein, and this high-grade gold mineralization remains wide open down dip and along strike to the southwest."

For the company's full press release, please visit: