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SURGOINSVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Police have charged an East Tennessee man in a cattle-rustling case.

Hawkins County Sheriff's Office Detective David Lafollette told the Kingsport Times-News that 35-year-old Jonathan David Bundren is charged with theft over $1,000 involving the theft of cattle. In addition, he faces drug charges after deputies raided his home while investigating the cattle theft.

Lafollette said cattle theft is increasing due to the high price of beef.

The arrest came about three weeks after sheriff's department and Tennessee Department of Agriculture began investigating two different cattle thefts in the area - one involving 12 cows and the other involving two.

Bundren was being held in the Hawkins County jail. It wasn't immediately clear whether he had an attorney.

Hawkins County Sheriff Ronnie Lawson tells 10News that this cow theft case is unrelated to another case involving a slaughtered cow.

Officials found a cow dead on a Rogersville farm on November 13th. Someone had cut the neck and spine of the cow and took the meat.

Deputies are still searching for the suspect. That person would be charged with larceny

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