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Thread: Hot off the Press.

  1. #1

    Hot off the Press.

    Hot off the press.
    The League Against Cruel Sports’ (LACS) private prosecution under the Hunting Act against six members of the Lamerton Hunt collapsed this morning, three days into a scheduled 10-day trial at Newton Abbot Magistrates' Court. LACS withdrew all evidence following an application by the Lamerton’s barrister, Peter Glenser, to have expert witness Professor Stephen Harris removed from the proceedings.

    Professor Harris had revealed under cross examination that he had a close personal relationship with a LACS employee, and was also read an email which he himself had written in 2012 stating that it would be “very damaging” if the police knew of his relationship with LACS. The court sought confirmation from absent LACS acting chief executive Rachel Newman, a qualified solicitor, that she had advised Professor Harris not to disclose the relationship with the LACS employee. Professor Harris had also been accused of embellishing his experience of hunting whilst giving evidence. Rather than answer these very serious questions LACS withdrew all charges. The defendants were represented by barrister Peter Glenser and solicitor Jamie Foster who will seek costs from LACS at a hearing next week.

    This case raises a series of fundamental questions about the abuse of the criminal justice system by vindictive private prosecutors. LACS spent more than £100,000 of charitable funds on a case that the police had correctly judged simply did not stand up. In desperation it has then sought to present as independent an expert witness who was clearly deeply prejudiced against the defendants and used the court process to harass six innocent people over an 18-month period. Questions need to be asked at the highest levels about this abuse.

    Our congratulations go to the six defendants who have been cleared and had the weight of this prosecution lifted from their shoulders, and to solicitor Jamie Foster and barrister Peter Glenser who represented them so effectively. The Countryside Alliance has been working with them all from the first moment LACS’ allegations surfaced nearly two years ago. Helping those dragged into this sort of vindictive prosecution is one of the reasons we exist.

    I am pleased to report that there were no prosecutions of hunts from the 2014/15 hunting season, and that this was the last outstanding Hunting Act prosecution involving a hunt. Animal rights groups will continue to make allegations, and perhaps even bring prosecutions, but as long as we stand together we will continue to beat them.
    Tim Bonner
    Chief Executive

  2. #2
    As is the case when the police want to prosecute someone, with the Crown Prosecution Service, surely a required safeguard for any organisation wanting to prosecute, the final decision should be made by a body that is independent of the investigating body. Otherwise, we see prosecutions being brought that are from the start doomed. But they think they are worth doing for disruption or publicity purposes.

    This should apply not only to LACS but also the RSPCA, RSPB and any other assortment of initials making up organisations, all of which have agendas. Maybe we should be seeing some of these bodies being investigated for malicious prosecutions.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro View Post
    As is the case when the police want to prosecute someone, with the Crown Prosecution Service, surely a required safeguard for any organisation wanting to prosecute, the final decision should be made by a body that is independent of the investigating body. Otherwise, we see prosecutions being brought that are from the start doomed. But they think they are worth doing for disruption or publicity purposes.

    This should apply not only to LACS but also the RSPCA, RSPB and any other assortment of initials making up organisations, all of which have agendas. Maybe we should be seeing some of these bodies being investigated for malicious prosecutions.
    Totally agree!

  4. #4

  5. #5
    My good friend Pete who sadly is not with us was represented by Peter Glenser, he got Pete's ticket as there case folded...

    He would be chuckling his socks off reading this post...


    Tim.243
    Stalking is very much like going to the night club

    You can always tell an Essex Boy, just you cant tell him much...

    An hour in the field is worth a week of typing trash.....




  6. #6
    RSPCA are currently also having a spot of legal upset. Their prosecution strategy of using the Animal Welfare Act for alleged wildlife crimes, due to higher penalties available compared to more appropriate legislation, has been blown out of the water by the decision of District Judge Kevin Gray. They are preparing a High Court challenge to the decision. The case may have had merit given the people they were going after, but it's an almighty deck up by the RSPCA and a belief that the law should be tailored to their requirements rather than the other way round.

  7. #7
    That's good news! It's high time that these so called charitable organisations like LACS etc were put in their place abd stopped trying to make the laws fit around their own personal agendas by using "underhand tactics"!



  8. #8
    Well played by the Countryside Alliance, (and also recently in the case of a gamekeeper unlawfully denied a special licence to control raptors on his shoot, a case supported by the NGO).

    It shows you what can be achieved when our field sports organisations take a hand in legal defences.

    Now it does seem a tad over due that the BASC actually help shooting members with their licencing problems involving the police. Perhaps if the BASC helped by offering legal support we would see the chief constables and PCCs get their act together.

    How about a BASC funded judicial review of inconsistent application of firearms law and guidance, or taking on the shameful delays in processing.

    Hampshire Police would be a good candidate, having the second worse performing firearms department (in terms of delay) and with the NPCC lead on firearms being Hampshire's chief constable.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Greymaster View Post
    Well played by the Countryside Alliance, (and also recently in the case of a gamekeeper unlawfully denied a special licence to control raptors on his shoot, a case supported by the NGO).

    It shows you what can be achieved when our field sports organisations take a hand in legal defences.

    Now it does seem a tad over due that the BASC actually help shooting members with their licencing problems involving the police. Perhaps if the BASC helped by offering legal support we would see the chief constables and PCCs get their act together.

    How about a BASC funded judicial review of inconsistent application of firearms law and guidance, or taking on the shameful delays in processing.

    Hampshire Police would be a good candidate, having the second worse performing firearms department (in terms of delay) and with the NPCC lead on firearms being Hampshire's chief constable.

    People who can't or won't swim, fear to rock the boat.
    (The Unspeakable In Pursuit Of The Uneatable.) " If I can help, I will help!." Former S.A.C.S. member!

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Greymaster View Post
    Hampshire Police would be a good candidate, having the second worse performing firearms department (in terms of delay) and with the NPCC lead on firearms being Hampshire's chief constable.
    IMHO Essex Police by a country mile - after stating on their website that they will only commence the 16 week (!!!) renewal process after the FAC has expired and a S.7 Permit issued, (effectively stopping anyone with expanding ammo continuing shooting and having to lodge it with an RFD at their expense!). Although they don't mention the latter point in their 'Service (sic) Delivery Targets':

    https://www.essex.police.uk/contact_...y_targets.aspx
    Last edited by Orion; 04-12-2015 at 09:11.

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