Back in my USMC days, black pepper was used to disguise pot from the dogs, and every now and then they would bring them through the barracks. Half of the time they would not find the pot, . So pepper has been around for the purpose of throwing off dogs for decades. it seems that the crime is still being weighed here--so IMO if some sort of machine was used, small dozer, etc., then there're questions of where he attained this apparatus on loan from what person. Now, someone who worked on a cane field digging trenches so they could set the field on fire might let him borrow/help him.