British heritage sites being raided

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Britain's archaeological heritage is being plundered by metal detector users who are illegally raiding protected sites across the country, it has been claimed. The first comprehensive national survey of its kind revealed thieves armed with state-of-the-art equipment are raiding some of the nation's most sensitive heritage sites. Researchers found knowledgeable criminals, dubbed nighthawks, are using auction websites such as eBay to cash in on what was once an illicit hobby. Police said some thieves have formed loosely-connected networks who trade information, often in online forums, about new and vulnerable sites. One senior Kent officer said there have been cases of farmers being threatened after confronting groups of men trespassing on their land at night.

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