Man fined as police crackdown on hare coursing in north Essex

2nd May 2022

AN estate manager has praised police officers after a man was fined for hare coursing on farmland and ordered to pay compensation for damage caused.

Albert Eastwood, 26, of Denton Close, Redhill, Surrey, admitted hare coursing and causing criminal damage to fields on the estate in north Essex.

He was fined £200 for hare coursing and £100 for criminal damage at Colchester Magistrates’ Court.

He was also ordered to pay £1,000 compensation to the estate, £105 court costs and a £34 victim surcharge.

The estate manager, who wished not to be named, said: “Full marks to Essex Police for pursuing this to a prosecution because hare coursing is a difficult crime to prosecute, although I’m hoping that Government plans to introduce tougher sentencing will happen soon.

“Hare coursing is a scourge and, quite apart from the fate of our brown hares, it often has links to organised crime, although not in this case. Thousands of pounds can be gambled at illegal coursing events.

“We really appreciate the police support.”

Eastwood had been spotted on February 1 driving his 4×4 vehicle at speed across a field, following a lurcher which was chasing a hare.

Essex Police were called by one of the gamekeepers and stopped Eastwood’s vehicle before he could leave the estate.

The vehicle contained two lurchers, together with three dead hares concealed in the passenger footwell.

The padlock and chain securing the field gate had been removed and tyre marks and ruts could be seen across the field.

Eastwood was reported for hare coursing and criminal damage.

PC Clare Dawson added: “Eastwood had driven a vehicle across farmland, which not only had the potential to damage crops but also caused ruts, which damage soil structure and can affect future crop yields.

“Hare coursing is a cruel activity, not just because hares are killed in the name of what some still persist in calling a ‘sport’ but because the dogs involved are often mistreated, too.

“We won’t tolerate animal cruelty in any form and will seek to prosecute whenever we have evidence of such crimes.”

One Reply to “Man fined as police crackdown on hare coursing in north Essex”

  1. WHY do scum like this only get fines they should be fined and put in prison and also tagged when they get out. They should also be banned for life from going near any animals ever again and if caught put back in prison for a longer stretch. Filthy scum like this want wiping off the planet.

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