Tuesday, 09 February 2016

Lake District hunt members cautioned by police after attack on protestors

Two members of a Lake District hunt have been cautioned by police after a video was posted on the internet showing an attack on anti-hunt protestors.

The League Against Cruel Sports were following the Coniston Foxhounds near Ambleside in March when the video was taken.

In it, a member of the league gets involved in an argument with an elderly hunt supporter, who begins jabbing a walking stick towards him.

Another man then arrives on a quad bike, and is told the league member “needs doing”. The cameraman is then pushed off a wall.

On Friday, police cautioned a 70-year-old man for using threatening behaviour to cause fear of violence, and a 44-year-old was cautioned for battery.

Watch the League Against Cruel Sports video (article continues below)

Ed Shephard, the league’s investigation officer, was on the scene on the day of the incident, and described the experience as “terrifying”, adding that he was disappointed with the decision to caution the members.

He said: “I’m very disappointed that these bullies are getting away with a caution. The police dealt with the case admirably, but for the CPS decision to leave it at a caution makes no sense.”

The league’s chief executive Douglas Batchelor added that it was only the latest example of verbal and physical abuse suffered by his staff and volunteers by hunt supporters.

He said: “If these thugs were carrying on like this down some high street, there would be hell to pay.

“There seems to be one law for the hunters and one for everyone else.”

A police spokesman said: “Two men were cautioned following an incident at White Moss Car Park at Rydal near Ambleside in March. A 44-year-old local man was cautioned for battery after he drove his quad bike toward a member of an animal welfare group, and then pushed another member off a dry stone wall.

“A second man aged 70 was cautioned for using threatening words or behaviour to cause fear or provoke violence after he waved a stick at a member of an animal welfare group.”


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