Hunting prosecutions at record high

Burnley and Pendle Citizen: The Coalition Agreement provides for a free vote on hunting The Coalition Agreement provides for a free vote on hunting

More people were prosecuted for hunting with dogs last year than in any other since the 2004 ban came into force, official figures show.

A total of 110 hunters were charged for offences under the Hunting Act in 2013, an increase on the previous high of 92 in 2009, according to Ministry of Justice figures.

Fox hunting was the primary target of the ban passed by Labour in power and the controversial issue still occupies the Government as farmers have argued a change is needed to control fox numbers after an increase in attacks on lambs

The Coalition Agreement promised MPs a free vote on repealing the Act, and Prime Minister David Cameron was forced in March to quash rumours the law would be amended to remove a limit of using two dogs to flush out foxes.

Ministers have admitted that the Tories and Liberal Democrats could not agree on how to proceed with the commitment to a vote but Environment Secretary Owen Paterson has said it will happen "at an appropriate time".

There has been a steady rise in the number of people being prosecuted for hunting with dogs since 2010, when 49 people faced charges.

In 2011, there were 72 prosecutions while in 2012, 84 hunters faced charges.

The offence carries a maximum fine of £5,000.

The 2010 Coalition Agreement, which sealed the power-sharing deal between the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, promised that, by the end of the Parliament in 2015 "we will bring forward a motion on a free vote enabling the House of Commons to express its view on the repeal of the Hunting Act".

The figures were released by Justice Minister Damian Green in response to a written parliamentary question from Labour former farming minister Jim Fitzpatrick.

Comments (3)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

12:33pm Thu 3 Jul 14

museli says...

So many of these prosecutions have been paid for by charities when the CPS should be carrying them out. If you steal a fiver from a millionaire the tax payer covers the costs of bringing you to book - if you are a millionaire who illegally kills wildlife with a pack of dogs then volunteers have to gather the evidence and charities pay for the prosecution.

Start sending these posh thugs to prison or fining them half a years income and and then maybe they'll think again about their cowardly, brutal, illegal behavior!
So many of these prosecutions have been paid for by charities when the CPS should be carrying them out. If you steal a fiver from a millionaire the tax payer covers the costs of bringing you to book - if you are a millionaire who illegally kills wildlife with a pack of dogs then volunteers have to gather the evidence and charities pay for the prosecution. Start sending these posh thugs to prison or fining them half a years income and and then maybe they'll think again about their cowardly, brutal, illegal behavior! museli
  • Score: 10

12:42pm Thu 3 Jul 14

welshmen says...

Your right, send the guilty offenders to prison, fining is not a deterrent to toff's or the toff's wanabes.....
Your right, send the guilty offenders to prison, fining is not a deterrent to toff's or the toff's wanabes..... welshmen
  • Score: 9

12:48pm Thu 3 Jul 14

Lord Elpus says...

Fox hunters the indefencible in pursuit of the inedible.
Fox hunters the indefencible in pursuit of the inedible. Lord Elpus
  • Score: 7
Post a comment

Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this post’ link.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree