A STOLEN car was crashed into a tree and abandoned on a country road.

Police in Fordingbridge confirmed that a Fiat Panda, which was stolen in March this year, was found crashed and abandoned in "suspicious circumstances."

The car was found with its rear number plate removed before police arrived, and police say it had used false plates.

Police have recovered the vehicle and began forensic tests to identify the offenders.

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The abandoned vehicleThe abandoned vehicle (Image: Fordingbridge Police)

The vehicle was found on Fish Lane, a single track rural road at Ripley, on Friday, June 28.

Fordingbridge Police released the following statement on Facebook:

"Early deployment for team yesterday when tasked to deal with a Fiat Panda which had driven into a tree on Fish Lane a single track rural road at Ripley, in Suspicious circumstances.

"The occupants/s had left prior to police arrival taking the rear number plate to try to conceal vehicle identity, however enquiries at the scene confirmed the Fiat Panda had been stolen in March this year and used on false plates. It has now been recovered for forensic opportunities to identify offenders.

"If you have seen this vehicle parked up/loitering suspiciously in your area, or know who has been driving it then call the Fordingbridge policing team on 101 in confidence quoting 44240272180 or alternatively phone Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, to put the brakes on criminals who bring harm and hardship to rural communities and businesses across the New Forest , Avon and Test Valley areas."