Two members of the Quantock Staghounds are due to make a first appearance before Taunton Deane Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday 21st August 2018 at 9.45am.

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

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.


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 Registered charity in England and Wales (no.1095234) and Scotland (no.SC045533).