THREE suspects who used darts and crossbows to kill and steal dogs and sell their meat for profit have been detained, police said today.
The trio reportedly rode on motorcycles and shot dogs with crossbows and darts in rural Qingpu District last Monday and Tuesday.
When police patrols discovered their crime, the three men drove toward the officers and hit them with helmets in an attempt to escape, police said.
The officers finally apprehended the dog thieves and seized their darts, crossbows and several dying dogs in their vehicles. It is unclear whether their darts contained animal tranquilizers or poisons.
One suspect, surnamed Zhang, said he had stolen more than 10 dogs using the darts this winter.
Police said the number of missing dogs in suburban Shanghai has been increasing as the temperature falls because dog meat is popular among hotpot eaters in winter. People are warned not to eat dogs for safety concern.