Hunt Saboteurs Association News Release 31st August 2016
George Adams (retired) huntsman of the Fitzwilliam Hunt along with Bird of Prey Handler John Mease appeared before Peterborough Magistrates court today. They pleaded not guilty to charges in relation to the hunting act following the death of a fox on Jan 1st 2016. John Mease is also facing cruelty charges from an incident 2 years ago involving a Golden Eagle and a fox. The defence attempted to get the expert witness statement from Professor Stephen Harris removed by questioning his character, however the judge told the defence in no uncertain terms that his evidence cannot be removed purely on hearsay.
The Hunting Act case will be heard on the 5th December and the cruelty case on the 8th, both at Peterborough Magistrates Court.
The video evidence for this prosecution was supplied by Beds and Bucks Hunt Saboteurs with witness statements from both Beds and Bucks and South Cambs Hunt saboteurs.
Lee Moon, Spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, stated: “We are pleased that this case is progressing and that both the CPS and Cambridgeshire Police have been willing to act on evidence gathered by hunt saboteurs. George Adams may have retired but justice should still be served and the Fitzwilliam need to learn that despite their wealth and connections they are not above the law.”
Hunt Saboteurs Association News Release 25th July 2016
Our third compilation of undercover footage shows the Pytchley Hunt bolting a fox with a terrier to be chased by the hounds.
The footage starts with the hunt having chased a fox underground. The terrier men send a terrier down after it to flush it out. Once the fox is above ground and running, the huntsman puts the hounds back on the scent and they continue to chase it. Every single action in that sequence is illegal.
In the second half of the video, a fox has taken refuge in a pile of farmyard junk after being chased by the hounds. Various members of the hunt try to extricate the fox, including the huntsman and whipper-in. Fortunately this fox escapes despite the hunt's best attempts to kill it.
Lee Moon, spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, said: 'This footage shows both the huntsman and the whipper-in of the Pytchley breaking the law. They are both employees of the hunt and would only behave in such a way with the express permission of the Masters and the hunt committee. The Countryside Alliance always claim it is rogue elements who break the law, but this footage clearly shows it is officially sanctioned behaviour.
We are pleased that the Pytchley Hunt were forced to pull out of Countryfile Live due to their illegal activities. We also look forward to hearing that Maidwell Hall School will no longer host them. There can be no place for hunting in a school.
Why have the Countryside Alliance and the Masters of Foxhounds Association not condemned these atrocities and announced an independent enquiry, as they have done in the recent South Herefordshire case? Until this happens, the whole hunting community is complicit in these acts.
Hunt Saboteurs Association News Release 11th July 2016
Our second compilation of undercover footage shows the Pytchley Hunt digging out foxes and releasing them in front of the hunt hounds to be illegally hunted.
The footage shows the hunt terrier men digging out a fox, that has sought safety underground, after being chased by the hounds. Mounted members of the hunt sit and watch as the dig out takes place. Once the fox has been dug, it is released and the huntsman puts the hounds back on its scent, to continue chasing it.
The second dig out occurs after the hounds chase a fox into a badger sett. The huntsman calls in the terrier men, who again attempt to dig out the fox. On this occasion they are unsuccessful.
Lee Moon, spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, said: “Once again we see the Pytchley Hunt desperate to chase and kill foxes. In this video they dig out the poor animals once they have taken refuge underground. Then release them just metres from the hounds in order to be chased once more. A practice so abhorrent that even hardened huntsmen feel it is beyond the pale. It is also illegal.
It is clear from the footage, that the Pytchley Hunt and its members, are totally complicit in flouting the Hunting Act. The casual manner in which mounted members of the hunt, sit and watch the dig out occur, shows how commonplace such practices are for this hunt. The huntsman himself is clearly shown, orchestrating the dig outs, as he can be seen calling in the terrier men.
We are pleased to see the Pytchley are no longer appearing at Countryfile Live. The BBC clearly do not wish to be associated with such law breaking. We now ask the Masters of Foxhounds Association and the Countryside Alliance what action they plan to take against the hunt. Following the recent expose of the South Herefordshire and now this footage of the Pytchley, it is important the pro-hunt community takes a strong stand against such law breaking, or they will be seen to be condoning it by the British public.
Hunt Saboteurs Association News Release 30th June 2016
Undercover footage handed to the Hunt Saboteurs Association by independent investigators, shows the Pytchley Hunt rearing and hunting foxes in direct contravention of the Hunting Act. The footage shows the hunt terrier men keeping captive foxes in an artificial earth, an underground tunnel system built by the hunt to maintain the fox population in an area they plan to hunt. The terrier men introduce cubs to the earth and initially keep them caged to ensure they don't leave the area. Once they are attached to the area the cage is removed to allow the cubs free rein in the wood. As can be seen, not all the cubs survive captivity.
One cub dies and is removed from the cage and callously thrown into the undergrowth. The cubs are regularly fed by the terrier men to ensure they don't leave the area in search of food. Hunting day arrives and we see the hunt terrier men enter the wood with a terrier and a spade. They use the terrier to flush a fox out of the artificial earth in front of the approaching hounds. The hounds pick up the scent of the fox and chase it. The terrier men then put a block over the entrance to the earth, to stop the fox seeking refuge. We then cut to the fox escaping across a field and one of the hunt masters holding his hat in the air to indicate the fox's direction of travel. Fortunately on this occasion, despite the hunts best efforts, the fox escapes.
Lee Moon, spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, said: “Investigations like this, prove what hunt saboteurs already know, illegal fox hunting is not about pest-control it's about hunting and killing for pleasure. In the last two years the North Cotswold Hunt have been caught feeding foxes, the Middleton Hunt have been caught breeding them and the Belvoir Hunt are implicated in keeping a captive fox to be “bagged” and released on the day of the hunt. Only last week the South Herefordshire Hunt were caught throwing live captive fox cubs to their pack of hounds. Every time a hunt is investigated they are found to be committing some hideous act of animal abuse that contravenes not only the law but also their own MFHA (Master of Fox Hounds Association) rules. The Countryside Alliance always claim a bad apple and distance the rest of the hunting community from the latest act of cruelty but it is clear that these practices are endemic at hunts across the country.”
Hunters from across the country will descend on the Cotswold village of Broadway this Saturday 18th June to attend the AGM of the secretive Association of Masters of Harriers and Beagles. The AMHB, which promotes the hunting of hares with dogs, hit the headlines two years ago when it attempted to organise a 'Young Hare Hunters Day' for children at Eton College.
Speakers at the event are set to include Brett Parker, a serving police officer and supporter of the violent Atherstone Foxhounds; and the notorious turncoat James Barrington of the Countryside Alliance. The day will conclude with a gathering of hare-hunting hounds at the venue in the centre of Broadway.
HSA Press Officer Lee Moon commented, "We were unsurprised to learn that the focus of the AMHB AGM is public relations, as the 2015-16 hunting season was an unmitigated PR disaster for the hunters. Shocking cruelty to foxes and hares was repeatedly caught on film and hunts were increasingly using gangs of masked thugs to attack anyone disagreeing with them. The hunters should realise that no amount of spin will convince the public that hunting and disembowelling wild animals for sport is acceptable."
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