Hunt saboteurs Association Press Release. 4th November 2012
Hunt saboteurs fimed the Beaufort hunt illegally hunting a fox during their opening meet of the hunting season at Worcester Lodge on the Badminton Estate, Gloucestershire on Saturday.
The small group of saboteurs kept a low profile throughout the day's hunt until near the end of the day they saw the hounds in full cry, hunting a fox, near Sopworth village. They attempted to call the hounds away from the fox and made it clear to the hunt that they had footage of the illegal hunting. The fox ran through the car supporters and along the road to safety. The pack picked up the scent of another fox which they hunted through an old tin shed in thick undergrowth and on through the village.
Lee Moon, spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, stated: “If the Beaufort hunt were following a trail, as they claimed, then how and why did they lay it through thick undergrowth, underneath an old shed and then through a residential area? We are certain that 2 foxes were being chased and it was only the intervention of our members which helped them escape. The reality of a day out with the Beaufort is very different from that portrayed on the Daily Mail's website.”
Hunt supporter Arrested after assault on Hunt Saboteurs
The Southdown and Eridge fox hunt held its opening meet of the season at Firle, near Lewes east Sussex, today. It was clear from the start that they intend to carry on their practice of flaunting the hunting ban and launching organised attacks against any who oppose them.
Slightly east of the meet the huntsman put up a fox and was encouraging the hounds onto the scent. Before sabs were able to intervene they were subject to an unprovoked attacked by around 10 hunt supporters, the very same men who had been the perpetrators of similar attacks in the past two seasons. The attack left three hunt saboteurs with head wounds and severe bruising which resulted in hospitalisation and stiches. Their attackers also stole a video camera and glasses. Following these attacks the sabs were ridden at by members of the hunt, driven at by a car follower and then assaulted by the ‘hunt stewards’ while attempting to seek medical treatment. The police were called but said they could not take any action until statements had been taken.
The remaining sabs soon located the hunt on the South Downs, a national park, with the huntsman off his horse clearly hunting. Before video evidence could be gathered they were surrounded by four quad bikes carrying the same men who had carried out the earlier assault, and attacked again. The police were once again called and eventually arrested one hunt supporter.
Lee Moon, spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, stated: “We are pleased that the police eventually arrested one hunt supporter however they should have acted decisively much earlier in the day. The South Down and Eridge should have realised by now that violence doesn't deter our members and in fact only makes them more determined to thwart their illegal activities.”
All Press enquiries: 07774 279133 firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.huntsabs.org.uk/
Note to editors
For previous incidents of violence involving this hunt please see:
Paul Standen, a supporter of the Ross Harriers Hunt, pleaded guilty today to assaulting two hunt saboteurs. Standen, who was on trial at Hereford Magistrates Court, had to pay a fine, costs and compensation.
The incident occurred in March this year when the Ross Harriers met at Kilpeck near Hereford. Standen drove his vehicle at a group of saboteurs before jumping out and violently pushing a female out of the way before punching another member of the group in the face. Unfortunately for him the whole attack was filmed and he was arrested.
Lee Peters, Master of the hunt, is also in court next month for racially abusing a hunt saboteur.
Lee Moon, spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, stated: “It is always a pleasure to see justice done, however we wish Mr. Standen had done the honourable thing and pleaded guilty much earlier in the proceedings and saved the tax payer a great deal of money. We look forward to a similar result next month when Mr. Peters is in court and we hope the Ross Harriers will start to realise they are not above the law.”
The Government have announced that the proposed cull of badgers in Gloucestershire and Somerset will not take place until next Summer at the earliest. Like a true politician the Defra minister, Owen Paterson, blamed the weather, the Olympics and too many badgers for the delay. We're surprised he didn't mention leaves on the line as well!
We will use this extra time to be even better prepared, if and when the cull finally starts. We have had a massive surge in membership and interest from people sickened by the proposed slaughter and we will be working hard throughout the winter months to complete our preparations against the cull. Local hunt saboteur groups have already informed us that they intend to maintain pressure on fox hunts and game bird shoots within the zones through legal direct action and groups from across the country will continue to survey throughout the winter so that if the cull starts we will know exactly where the badger setts are located.
Lee Moon, spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, stated: “Today was a massive step forward in the fight to save the badgers, however it is not the end. We must make sure we keep campaigning hard throughout the winter to ensure the concept of culling badgers is forever consigned to the scrap heap of history. Our local groups, bouyed by all their new members, are eager to get out in the fields and do what they do best, directly intervene on behalf of this country's persecuted wildlife”
All Press enquiries: 07774 279133 email@example.com http://www.huntsabs.org.uk ENDS
Over 80 hunt saboteurs and anti-cull campaigners descended on Forthampton Estate near Tewkesbury today to show their disapproval at the proposed badger cull. The 3000 acre shooting estate covers 3% of the Gloucestershire cull zone and fully supports the cull. The saboteurs took full advantage of the estate's many footpaths to legally survey for badger setts as well as looking for evidence of the shooting industries guilty secrets and bad practices. They were followed by concerned, and occasionally aggressive, estate staff who were keen to keep them away from the game bird breeding facilities and release pens. The estate also had private security guarding key buildings. The police were out in force and even felt it necessary to send out their helicopter to keep an eye on events.
Lee Moon, spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, stated: “Today was an exercise in showing the cost of being involved in the cull. No one broke the law or went anywhere they weren't allowed yet Forthampton estate felt the need to bring all their staff in on a Sunday and even employ extra security while the police were out in force to watch people strolling around the countryside. With so many footpaths Forthampton Estate, and many other landowners in the cull zones, will find it difficult to stop legal opposition to the un-scientific, immoral badger cull”
Surrey Union Hunt - One Law For Them And Another One For Us
The Hunt Saboteurs Association (HSA) today revealed that a hunt saboteur attacked by hunt supporters at the Surrey Union hunt on Saturday (1 February) near Guildford suffered a fractured cheek bone in 2 places.
The hunt met near Willingshurst House, Shamley Green and the protestor was among a group using hunting horns and a tape recording to distract hounds from a fox they were chasing. They were attacked by supporters of the hunt, who also damaged equipment the group were using. A supporter of the hunt is believed to have been arrested in connection with the attack.
One hunt supporter, wearing a distinctive Surrey Union Hunt jacket, claimed to be a police officer and attempted an "arrest" on a saboteur before violently assaulting him. The hunt is also believed to have trespassed during the day 's proceedings with the full support of the police.
Over 20 police officers were in attendance in a variety of four wheel drive vehicles and riot vans, ostensibly to remain impartial and uphold the law for both 'sides'. However, saboteurs claim that police ignored law breaking by the hunt and behaved as if they were a private security firm acting on the hunt's behalf at the expense of Surrey taxpayers.
Protestors were forced off and refused access to public rights of way by officers
Police confiscated items (i.e. not offensive weapons) used to save animals without giving receipts
Protestors claim they were assaulted by police who also broke their equipment (video footage is available showing this)
One protestor witnessed an officer announcing "you can sue me through the courts - I don't care"
When the hunt trespassed onto land they had no permission to hunt on, they falsely claimed to be agents for the land and the police unquestioningly supported them
Six hunt saboteurs were arrested for alleged offences of "Aggravated Trespass" and taken to Guildford police station. Several official complaints have been lodged regarding the behaviour of the police.
Sussex police were called in to support Surrey (at further expense) with the request that they gather information on the anti-hunt protestors present "because we don't know who half of them are"! This is despite intensive video and photographic evidence gathering and vehicle checks whenever saboteurs are present, and telephone monitoring prior to hunt meetings. Recent attempts by Surrey police to offer money to animal rights campaigners for information on saboteurs in the county show their desperation to clamp down on anyone causing inconvenience to the hunt despite overwhelming public opinion opposed to hunting with dogs.
Local saboteurs said:"Given recent pronouncements on the lack of policing resources for 'real crime' in Surrey, it would seem obvious to go back to the days before the latest chief constable arrived and the hunt took over formulating Surrey police policy. Before they started bullying and arresting sabs under the direction of the hunt with laws they had not invoked for 9 years, the police could attend at a reasonable level without wasting thousands of pounds a day. We are constantly asked by officers at the hunt why we don't have a dialogue with them any more, as they can see what a waste of time and money policing the hunt with 20 or more officers every week is. The police regularly outnumber the riders at the hunt. Unfortunately the same questions do not appear to have occurred to their superiors."
HSA spokesperson Nathan Brown said, "It seems that Surrey Police are not acting impartially and the public deserve to know why. Saturday's events suggest an attitude of one law for the hunt and another one for us."
He added, "Despite the overzealous policing, saboteurs remained active in the area and ensured the hunt did not kill. In fact, because the hunt staff were on foot or riding on quad bikes, we were easily able to shadow their movements and be in front of them when a fox and deer broke cover. The day ended without the hunt killing any foxes, and the huntsman desperately calling for his hounds after they had been taken for a run by saboteurs several valleys away from him!"
Notes to Editors:- Broadcast quality footage and stills of the incidents are available on request