27 Jan 2016
WARNING DISTRESSING FOOTAGE – https://www.facebook.com/West-Midlands-Hunt-Saboteurs-243223759156039
Officers were called to the scene by members of the West Midlands Hunt Saboteurs Group who captured the video footage
Gruesome video footage of a mutilated fox being carried in a hound’s jaws during a fox hunt has emerged.
Police are investigating after they were called to reports of a fox being killed illegally during a meeting of Atherstone Hunt on Tuesday.
Officers were called to the scene by members of the West Midlands Hunt Saboteurs Group who filmed the scene.
The clip show the lifeless body of the animal being carried in the teeth of one of the hounds.
Later images, too disturbing to show, reveal the horrific extent of the fox’s injuries as it lies dead on the ground.
Members of the hunt then appear to leave the dead animal behind, riding off into the distance after the saboteurs arrive.
A spokesman for West Midlands Hunt Saboteurs said: “We heard the hounds and then they crossed over the road, they were either side of a hedge making lots of noise.
“The hunt was stationary and one huntsman was off his horse, that’s when we saw the dead fox in the hound’s mouth.
“They looked completely indifferent, they just got back on their horses and carried on hunting.”
Since 2005, it has been illegal to hunt foxes with dogs.
The maximum penalty is a £5,000 fine while police can also confiscate and destroy equipment and dogs used in hunting.
Individuals who refuse to comply with confiscation orders or fines issued could face further punishment, including a prison sentence.
A spokesman for Leicestershire Police said: “Police were called to Hall Lane, in Osbaston, at about 12pm yesterday following an allegation by a member of the public that a fox had been killed illegally.
“Officers attended and have began an investigation in to the circumstances surrounding the incident. Inquiries are in the early stages.”
It is the second report of a fox being killed during a meeting of Atherstone Hunt in just weeks and follows an incident in Warwickshire which saw a fox being chased down and mauled by a pack of about 20 dogs.
That incident is being investigated by Warwickshire Police, but a hunt spokesman insisted the animal had been accidentally killed.
They suggested the fox was injured when the hunt stumbled across it, which meant it couldn’t escape.
The West Midlands Hunt Saboteurs group has posted several other videos in recent weeks which appear to show Atherstone Hunt members chasing live foxes which manage to get away – sometimes only after the group’s intervention.
Atherstone Hunt had not responded to requests for comment at the time of writing.
North West Hunt Saboteurs Association
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