HSA news release 19th November 2005

A supporter of the Suffolk Hunt was today (19 Nov) arrested after allegedly headbutting an anti-hunt activist. Activists had attended the hunt meet at Saxham Hall near Bury St. Edmunds to monitor its activities. The hunt had an owl present - an attempt to exploit a loophole in the Hunting Act. However, the hunt allegedly broke the Act when hounds chased after a fox.

The landowner is alleged to have assaulted 2 female protestors and stolen a video camera - being used to document breaches of the law - which he then threw in a ditch. Shortly afterwards another man carried out the alleged assault which was witnessed by a police officer, who carried out the arrest.

Police were also called today (19 Nov) by activists near Selborne, Hampshire after they were attacked whilst trying to film hounds from the Hampshire Hunt thought to be chasing a fox. Supporters of the hunt rammed quad bikes into the activists' land rover, blocked the road and tried to steal a video camera before attempting to drag one woman from the back of the landrover.

Hunt Saboteurs Association spokesperson Nathan Brown said "It is clear that these hunts have something to hide or they would not attempt to steal or damage video cameras. Violence and intimidation is also a tactic used to try to prevent our members from recording hunts breaking the law. The police need to take action now to stamp out this hooliganism from the hunting fraternity before another hunt saboteur is seriously injured or killed."

He added "Hunt saboteurs have switched to monitoring hunts in order to provide evidence for prosecutions under the Hunting Act. However, if the CPS and police allow hunts to ride roughshod over the law, the HSA's members will have to return to our old tactics of using hunting horns and sprays to save the animal being chased."