Two men have been charged by police after allegedly stealing a dog from a backyard in Sydney’s west and demanding cash from the owner for the animal to be returned.
The men, both aged 25, were arrested in a vehicle in Cabramatta with the female Labrador cross Staffordshire, named Lily, sitting in the vehicle with them.
The dog’s owner told police she had received a phone call telling her to bring cash to a specific location in Cabramatta if she wanted to see her dog again.
But when she arrived at the location she instead flagged down patrolling police officers, who approached the vehicle on her behalf and arrested the two men.
The 21-year-old woman told police that Lily had been stolen from the backyard of her home in Bonnyrigg earlier on Monday, before she received the phone call.
A NSW Police spokesman would not specify how much cash the men allegedly demanded in return for the dog, but said it was a “reasonably small amount”.
When the woman arrived in Cabramatta about 4.30pm on Monday she flagged down officers from the Cabramatta proactive crime team who were patrolling along John Street and Gladstone Street.
Police said the officers approached the car and arrested two men.
“They searched the vehicle, locating the female Labrador cross Staffordshire named Lily, and will allege they also located cannabis, goods suspected of being stolen, and a balaclava,” police said in a statement.
The men were taken to Cabramatta Police Station, where one man was charged with drug possession, stealing a dog, having goods in custody, having custody of a knife, and corruptly taking reward for a stolen dog.
The second man was charged with driving while disqualified, breaching bail, stealing a dog, and corruptly taking a reward for a stolen dog.
Both men were refused bail and are due to appear in Liverpool Local Court on Tuesday.