West Midlands Police announced a theft with a press release littered with sheep puns and even pixelating an animal's face after three men were caught trying to steal lambs from a farmer.

The police said that the Romanian men 'rammed' into a car in Yardley while trying to make off with the animals, and police 'flocked' to the scene to arrest them.

The force says officers then 'herded' the men into a police van, with 'shear' determination in the release, which actually related to a genuine crime.

It even includes a pictured of the sheep with a face pixelated, and the caption joking: 'The identity of the lambs has been protected due to their age and vulnerability'.

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Inspector Paul Southern is then quoted, saying: 'It's not every day we recover live stolen property, but the lambs seem none the worse for their adventure.

'We are now trying to trace where they came from and are asking farmers to check their flocks to see if they have any missing.'

The release reads: 'Three suspected poachers have lost their sheep but West Midlands Police knows where to find them... in the back of a people carrier in Birmingham!
It also showed a picture of Inspector Clive Baynton

'Officers spotted three woolly back-seat passengers being driven in a Ford Galaxy along Hob Moor Road, Yardley, in the early hours of this morning.

'The vehicle tried making off but moments later rammed into a parked car in Rosedale Road where three men leaped from the car and fled.

'West Midlands Police units - including a dog handler and the police helicopter - flocked to the scene in a bid to find the suspects.

'And their shear determination paid off when the men were found hiding in nearby gardens - including one up a tree and another who'd sneaked into a conservatory - before being herded into a police van.

'The men, Romanian nationals aged 22, 27 and 28, are currently in police custody on suspicion of theft.

'The lambs were recovered unhurt from the vehicle and have been temporarily re-homed on a farm in Sheldon while police make enquiries with regional farmers.'