Two members of the Quantock Staghounds accused of allegedly illegally hunting a deer with hounds are to face trial at Taunton Deane Magistrates’ Court on Monday, November 12.

Huntsman Richard Down aged 54 of West Bagborough near Taunton, and whipper-in Martin Watts aged 55 of Washford, are being prosecuted for alleged illegal hunting with dogs on 22nd January 2018, contrary to Section 1 of the Hunting Act 2004.

The two men made a first appearance in court in August at Taunton Deane Magistrates and pleaded not guilty.

The high-profile case is based on evidence provided to Avon & Somerset Police by investigators employed by the League Against Cruel Sports, which is an animal welfare charity.

The case comes 13 years after hunting was banned in England and Wales with the introduction of the Hunting Act 2004, which came into force in February 2005.

Petition

The League is encouraging members of the public to sign their petition titled ‘stop the killing of animals by hunts in the UK

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Notes to Editors

  • For more information or interview requests please contact the League Against Cruel Sports Press Office on 01483 524250 (24hrs) or email [email protected]

  • The League Against Cruel Sports is Britain's leading charity that works to stop animals being persecuted, abused and killed for sport. The League was instrumental in helping bring about the landmark Hunting Act. We carry out investigations to expose law-breaking and cruelty to animals and campaign for stronger animal protection laws and penalties. We work to change attitudes and behaviour through education and manage sanctuaries to protect wildlife. Find out more about our work at www.league.org.uk. Registered charity in England and Wales (no.1095234) and Scotland (no.SC045533).