Dogs and Sheep - what best to do ?

VSS

Well-Known Member
Just a quick question to clarify and potentially learn something new...

Does ANYONE have the appropriate wording on their certificate to

'shoot a dog worrying their sheep'

Or would it be loosely contained under the 'any other legal quarry' wording?

I ask as I struggle to believe any constabulary would physically write that you have permission to slot mutley :-|
I believe that the correct wording is "for the killing of animals to protect other animals", but I'm not sure.
AOLQ wouldn't cover it, because it is not lawful to shoot the dog.
There are no such conditions attached to a shotgun licence, so nothing there for anyone to get you with if the dog's owners decide to prosecute you for damage to their property (ie, the dog).

In reality, you shoot it with whatever you've got to hand, and hope for the best, but you could be leaving yourself wide open to a shed load of bother.
I have only ever used a shotgun for this purpose. It is not nice, but I have had no repercussions.
 

DVS1

Well-Known Member
Interesting....thankyou for your input and it would be interesting if this wording is how they would cover it and if that's the case whether it's a standard to apply it to a farmers certificate wording as it would be most applicable for the farmers amongst us.
 

slider

Well-Known Member
The expanding ammo clause in my certificate gives permission to posses purchase or acquire ammunition...for use...... d)The shooting of animals for the protection of other animals or humans
 

Glyn 1

Well-Known Member
Whatever the your interpretation of the law or how right/justified you consider yourself to be I suspect you are heading for big problems in the local community if you shoot someones family pet. I would be more concerned about the social and practical implications than the legal ones. Everyone likes to play the hardman and say just shoot it but people think a lot of their dogs, I know that I would take a very dim view of anyone shooting one of my dogs however right they were.
 

cyberstag

Well-Known Member
Whatever the your interpretation of the law or how right/justified you consider yourself to be I suspect you are heading for big problems in the local community if you shoot someones family pet. I would be more concerned about the social and practical implications than the legal ones. Everyone likes to play the hardman and say just shoot it but people think a lot of their dogs, I know that I would take a very dim view of anyone shooting one of my dogs however right they were.
That sounds like it could be a threat. Possibly in retaliation against somebody lawfully protecting their livestock. But then maybe just the way you have worded it is giving the wrong impression. Hope so.
 

Irish Bob

Well-Known Member
This is a subject I know a bit about!
A few things to be aware of:
1) You do NOT have a RIGHT to shoot the dog, despite what anyone tells you. However, if you shoot a dog and the owner tries to prosecute you, your defence is that you were protecting your livestock (i.e., the dog was actually chasing your animals, or was out of control and about to do so).
2) The owner of the dog has committed an offence by allowing their dog to chase your animals, so it's highly unlikely that you'd be prosecuted anyway.
3) Never threaten to shoot someone's dog. Threatening behaviour with a shotgun will get you into worse throuble than shooting a dog. Either you just get on and do it, or you don't.
4) Always try to get a photo of the dog attacking the animals before you shoot it.
5) If possible, you should inform police of what you're about to do (although I appreciate this isn't always possible, as things happen too quickly).
6) IMMEDIATELY inform police after you've shot it (i.e., before the dog's owner has a chance to contact police).
7) DO NOT shoot a dog with a section 1 firearm unless it particularly specifies on your FAC that you can shoot animals for the purpose of protecting other animals (or whatever the exact wording is).
8) There are certain situations where you have no defence if you shoot a dog, for example if it is a working sheepdog, a working gundog, or a working foxhound.

Also, I don't know what part of Wales the OP is from, but NWP are taking a very tough line with dog owners these days, and will back up any livestock owner who shoots a dog, and will push for prosecution of the dog's owner.

(Edit: Slider's post above appeared while I was typing. You'll see that there are a few overlaps in the info provided. His info came straight from the NSA website, mine came from personal experience. However, as it happens I am a committee member of the NSA in Wales).
Good advice
This is a subject I know a bit about!
A few things to be aware of:
1) You do NOT have a RIGHT to shoot the dog, despite what anyone tells you. However, if you shoot a dog and the owner tries to prosecute you, your defence is that you were protecting your livestock (i.e., the dog was actually chasing your animals, or was out of control and about to do so).
2) The owner of the dog has committed an offence by allowing their dog to chase your animals, so it's highly unlikely that you'd be prosecuted anyway.
3) Never threaten to shoot someone's dog. Threatening behaviour with a shotgun will get you into worse throuble than shooting a dog. Either you just get on and do it, or you don't.
4) Always try to get a photo of the dog attacking the animals before you shoot it.
5) If possible, you should inform police of what you're about to do (although I appreciate this isn't always possible, as things happen too quickly).
6) IMMEDIATELY inform police after you've shot it (i.e., before the dog's owner has a chance to contact police).
7) DO NOT shoot a dog with a section 1 firearm unless it particularly specifies on your FAC that you can shoot animals for the purpose of protecting other animals (or whatever the exact wording is).
8) There are certain situations where you have no defence if you shoot a dog, for example if it is a working sheepdog, a working gundog, or a working foxhound.

Also, I don't know what part of Wales the OP is from, but NWP are taking a very tough line with dog owners these days, and will back up any livestock owner who shoots a dog, and will push for prosecution of the dog's owner.

(Edit: Slider's post above appeared while I was typing. You'll see that there are a few overlaps in the info provided. His info came straight from the NSA website, mine came from personal experience. However, as it happens I am a committee member of the NSA in Wales).
This is good advice and accurately sets out the legal position. Shooting a dog is the last resort if you cannot stop it from worrying / attacking livestock or get hold of it. In my view, this should be avoided if at all possible.

For the avoidance of doubt the dog has to be doing it at the time. Just being in a field with livestock is not sufficient.
 

Sonicdmb73

Well-Known Member
Just a quick question to clarify and potentially learn something new...

Does ANYONE have the appropriate wording on their certificate to

'shoot a dog worrying their sheep'

Or would it be loosely contained under the 'any other legal quarry' wording?

I ask as I struggle to believe any constabulary would physically write that you have permission to slot mutley :-|
Mine used to have the addition of “for the protection of livestock and other animals”
 

The fourth Horseman

Well-Known Member
Whatever the your interpretation of the law or how right/justified you consider yourself to be I suspect you are heading for big problems in the local community if you shoot someones family pet. I would be more concerned about the social and practical implications than the legal ones. Everyone likes to play the hardman and say just shoot it but people think a lot of their dogs, I know that I would take a very dim view of anyone shooting one of my dogs however right they were.

From that I take it that if one of your dogs was worrying and I mean worrying sheep and causing somebody a great deal of worry and financial loss, you would take a dim view if they shot it. If that is the case I am amazed and it almost makes me think of totally irresponsible dog owners who shouldn't have one. I would not think twice even if it was my own dog and I couldn't stop it.
 

DVS1

Well-Known Member
Whatever the your interpretation of the law or how right/justified you consider yourself to be I suspect you are heading for big problems in the local community if you shoot someones family pet. I would be more concerned about the social and practical implications than the legal ones. Everyone likes to play the hardman and say just shoot it but people think a lot of their dogs, I know that I would take a very dim view of anyone shooting one of my dogs however right they were.
I hear the flip side here and if this is a repeated issue of numerous occasions and the landowner has taken reasonable steps to prevent it then whats the only other action left?? take legal action and sue for damages caused by the owners dog against the owners sheep? At this point it becomes a quagmire of legal he said, she said etc and sheep potentially continuing to be chased and injured perhaps.

Dogs do run off or dont come to the call at times, it's just their nature, but if it's a repeated issue and all steps have been exhausted then the sheep owner either takes the loss or protect his livelihood.
 

Cootmeurer

Well-Known Member
Very interesting reading. Here in the states were have a much more permissive system for shooting dogs harassing livestock - but even then I would consider it to be a last resort. As a general rule, dog owners (even very irresponsible ones) are quite attached to their pets and will raise all manner of difficulty if their animal is shot, no matter how justified.

I have had dog issues twice - once with cattle and once with horses (never have owned sheep). The cattle resolved the situation on their own - stomping the beast to death. In that case I made no effort to locate owner - just let the vultures clear the evidence. In the case of the horses we incurred a very very large veterinary bill - but because we did not actually see the attack we were left unable to pin it on a known culprit (although strong circumstantial evidence was against a pair of neighboring rottweilers). We warned neighbors to keep dogs up - and when they keep re-appearing in the pasture were chose an option that was completely legal, completely blameless, and yet probably lethal. We caught the dogs and then took them to the pound. The twist is that we took them to a pound several counties over.
 

jjjc999

Member
I have a small flock of sheep, Wiltshire horned. They are mobile grasscutters and have a very easy life. Two of last years lambs died, without a mark on them.
Yesterday I spotted a terrier type dog in the field - mainly due to the sheep running to one end of the field. Dressed quickly took and age to get a shotgun out of the ****** cabinet and went into the field. The dog was not chasing the sheep but they were clearly unhappy and packed together as one might expect. I fired 3 shots into the air, watched the dog run for it and traced the house he came from. Went round and asked, politely, if they owned a brown short legged dog. Yes, was the reply
.
I said he'd been in with my sheep, they needed to be responsible and control the dog or I would have no alternative but to shoot it to protect the flock, had 2 die in suspicious circumstances etc.
The chap says, I was a sheep farmer and whilst I cant guarantee the dog wont get out into the field again, I can guarantee it wont attack the sheep, its trained not to. I explained about spontaneous abortion, heart attacks etc (which he would have known about and this guy was adamant he couldnt guarantee to keep the dog out of the field but he would guarantee it wouldn't harm the sheep.
What about fear and its effects on sheep which clearly were frightened - oh yes he says, I saw him 'gather' them and then run back when you fired the shots. After much discussion during which I said "dont make me shoot your dog" and him saying it wont hurt the sheep, rather pointlessly. I left it there. Theres a point when its obvious someone does not want to ackowledge responsibility and banging your head against a wall starts to hurt.
We left it with me saying I would contact the police and would guarantee him that if the dog got out into my field again and started chasing/gathering the sheep I would shoot it . He said no need for the police and thanks for letting me know - it wont hurt the sheep
.
Without any emotion, what would you do?
The right and wrong of it are obvious - he has grandkids but doesn't seem to care enough to keep the dog under control.
I am thinking I should chat to the police and shoot it when I next see it - he's had his warning.

Any thoughts as I am open to advice and know once shot, theres no way back.

Finally, my other neighbour, a sheep and livestock farmer, had a sheepdog dog which chased my sheep and I told him - he got rid of the dog advertising it on FB as 'free to good home' and said, "thanks we normally just shoot them if we see them in the field with the flock". This is Wales and very 'sheepy'.
I have a small flock of sheep, Wiltshire horned. They are mobile grasscutters and have a very easy life. Two of last years lambs died, without a mark on them.
Yesterday I spotted a terrier type dog in the field - mainly due to the sheep running to one end of the field. Dressed quickly took and age to get a shotgun out of the ****** cabinet and went into the field. The dog was not chasing the sheep but they were clearly unhappy and packed together as one might expect. I fired 3 shots into the air, watched the dog run for it and traced the house he came from. Went round and asked, politely, if they owned a brown short legged dog. Yes, was the reply
.
I said he'd been in with my sheep, they needed to be responsible and control the dog or I would have no alternative but to shoot it to protect the flock, had 2 die in suspicious circumstances etc.
The chap says, I was a sheep farmer and whilst I cant guarantee the dog wont get out into the field again, I can guarantee it wont attack the sheep, its trained not to. I explained about spontaneous abortion, heart attacks etc (which he would have known about and this guy was adamant he couldnt guarantee to keep the dog out of the field but he would guarantee it wouldn't harm the sheep.
What about fear and its effects on sheep which clearly were frightened - oh yes he says, I saw him 'gather' them and then run back when you fired the shots. After much discussion during which I said "dont make me shoot your dog" and him saying it wont hurt the sheep, rather pointlessly. I left it there. Theres a point when its obvious someone does not want to ackowledge responsibility and banging your head against a wall starts to hurt.
We left it with me saying I would contact the police and would guarantee him that if the dog got out into my field again and started chasing/gathering the sheep I would shoot it . He said no need for the police and thanks for letting me know - it wont hurt the sheep
.
Without any emotion, what would you do?
The right and wrong of it are obvious - he has grandkids but doesn't seem to care enough to keep the dog under control.
I am thinking I should chat to the police and shoot it when I next see it - he's had his warning.

Any thoughts as I am open to advice and know once shot, theres no way back.

Finally, my other neighbour, a sheep and livestock farmer, had a sheepdog dog which chased my sheep and I told him - he got rid of the dog advertising it on FB as 'free to good home' and said, "thanks we normally just shoot them if we see them in the field with the flock". This is Wales and very 'sheepy'.
Take legal advice before you act ; the NSA offer guidance and describe the legal aspects of sheep worrying and the associated legislation . This area of law is complex and you could find yourself at risk of prosecution. I can't believe there are people on this site advocating you just shoot the dog , if you take advice from idiots like this you will be
I have a small flock of sheep, Wiltshire horned. They are mobile grasscutters and have a very easy life. Two of last years lambs died, without a mark on them.
Yesterday I spotted a terrier type dog in the field - mainly due to the sheep running to one end of the field. Dressed quickly took and age to get a shotgun out of the ****** cabinet and went into the field. The dog was not chasing the sheep but they were clearly unhappy and packed together as one might expect. I fired 3 shots into the air, watched the dog run for it and traced the house he came from. Went round and asked, politely, if they owned a brown short legged dog. Yes, was the reply
.
I said he'd been in with my sheep, they needed to be responsible and control the dog or I would have no alternative but to shoot it to protect the flock, had 2 die in suspicious circumstances etc.
The chap says, I was a sheep farmer and whilst I cant guarantee the dog wont get out into the field again, I can guarantee it wont attack the sheep, its trained not to. I explained about spontaneous abortion, heart attacks etc (which he would have known about and this guy was adamant he couldnt guarantee to keep the dog out of the field but he would guarantee it wouldn't harm the sheep.
What about fear and its effects on sheep which clearly were frightened - oh yes he says, I saw him 'gather' them and then run back when you fired the shots. After much discussion during which I said "dont make me shoot your dog" and him saying it wont hurt the sheep, rather pointlessly. I left it there. Theres a point when its obvious someone does not want to ackowledge responsibility and banging your head against a wall starts to hurt.
We left it with me saying I would contact the police and would guarantee him that if the dog got out into my field again and started chasing/gathering the sheep I would shoot it . He said no need for the police and thanks for letting me know - it wont hurt the sheep
.
Without any emotion, what would you do?
The right and wrong of it are obvious - he has grandkids but doesn't seem to care enough to keep the dog under control.
I am thinking I should chat to the police and shoot it when I next see it - he's had his warning.

Any thoughts as I am open to advice and know once shot, theres no way back.

Finally, my other neighbour, a sheep and livestock farmer, had a sheepdog dog which chased my sheep and I told him - he got rid of the dog advertising it on FB as 'free to good home' and said, "thanks we normally just shoot them if we see them in the field with the flock". This is Wales and very 'sheepy'.
Take legal advice in addition to reporting the incident to the police before you do anything; the NSA offer sound advice and identify the statute applicable to this offence. I can't believe there are people on this site advocating you just shoot the dog in the first instance, this is poor advice at best, the outcomes of which may award you with a criminal record.
 

Glyn 1

Well-Known Member
That sounds like it could be a threat. Possibly in retaliation against somebody lawfully protecting their livestock. But then maybe just the way you have worded it is giving the wrong impression. Hope so.
No threat from me John, I'm not the owner of the dog in question, just adding a bit of realism/devils advocacy to the conversation. Sorry if I have offended anyone by commenting.
 

cyberstag

Well-Known Member
Just to throw another complication into the mix, I found some exemptions to dogs that can be shot.

  • The above defence does not apply to all dogs: sheepdogs, police dogs, guide dogs, working gun dogs and pack hounds are all exempt and under no circumstances should be shot.
About 2 months ago we were sitting in the garden enjoying a drink (coffee in my case, before you jump to conclusions) when the master of the local staghounds appeared and said they had just hunted a stag into my deer paddocks. This is by no means the first time this has happened. A brief discussion came to the choice of letting it out or shooting it. I asked him which was his preferred option; he said shooting it. I asked what he had available, he said a 12 bore. I grabbed my rifle and shot the stag. He was in such a state that I doubt he would have lasted 24 hours if I had let him out. Fortunately I am old enough that my anger came second to my concern to give the stag a quick death.
Now technically stag hunting is still legal I believe, as long as they only use 2 hounds at a time (not the case here) but imagine if they had all started hunting my deer around in the paddocks. The above quoted bit of legislation says *pack hounds are exempt and under no circumstances should be shot"

So a bunch of people quasi-legally hunting have more rights than I do to protect my own livestock.

We all know that laws are a woefully inadequate way to attempt to control people and that in extreme circumstances you will do whatever you have to to protect your family and your means of livelihood. Just hope you do not find yourselves in such a position.
 

cyberstag

Well-Known Member
No threat from me John, I'm not the owner of the dog in question, just adding a bit of realism/devils advocacy to the conversation. Sorry if I have offended anyone by commenting.
It's quite difficult to offend me Glynn and I know you weren't trying to do that.
I do think it is good that this subject is having a good airing on here so that we all become more aware.
 

countrryboy

Well-Known Member
1 thing i'd add is no matter how well u know or think u have trained ur dogs u can never really ever trust them 100% with livestock,
esp if unsupervised and 2 or more are lose as pack mentality can take over and the dogs will egg/encourage each other 1st to chase which may esculate as the dogs begin to self reward with he chase etc into real worrying.

I know a lad who's 2 dogs escaped from his normally secure run and caused quite a bit of damage to some sheep, (he is a very good gun dog trainer and while i hadn't seen those dogs all his previous dogs have been very well trained to a high standard)
To be fair to him he put something up on fachache about it saying farmer was 100% correct to shoot his dogs (which were well bred so expensive) and just for everyone to double/triple check there kennels/runs/gardens as it really can happen to anyone (althou should only happen the once, dogs either shot or u make ur runs 100% secure)
I'm sure those dogs would be stock steady but just being entirely unsupervised and a hard hunting breed it all become too much for them

I also know a few farmers who have shot dogs and still suffer consequances years later, gates being left open very frequantly etc far more pften than all their nieghbours

Ps the SSS is completely illegal and not good advice to follow really.

I know i have mentioned the improve fencing side of things previously, but it would also give u piece of mind if ur not watching the field 24/7 like when ur at work
Chances are a terrier will be going under a fence rather than over it, hence rabbit or pig net would be an easy fix over a decent meterage quickly, prob run out 100m in an hour
 

CarlW

Well-Known Member
This thread makes me proud to be part of the UK FAC-holding community. There are not many forums (fora?) where a bunch of this many blokes would be at such pains to stay within the law. It kinda proves that the licensing system, despite its failings, does ensure that guns generally end up in the right people's hands.

Kind regards,

Carl
 

landkeeper

Well-Known Member
The reason i said s.s.s in my experience is simply that .the system doesn't work i have had the misfortune to have had to shoot several dogs over the years after incidents of sheep worrying ,Not once have i got a penny in compensation for the thousands of quid losses and damage caused .i could regail you with incidents of ewes stuck in wire with half aborted lambs hanging out of them ,ewes with skin torn from faces ears missing noses ripped off, a hogget ewe with no flesh left on a hind leg from ankle to fully visible hip bone hobbling around in circles ,half a dozen ewes with their 10 or so nr 40kg lambs all floating in a drain after being chased in by rambling dogs i could go on and on .
Owners are mostly the same, 'oh my little ralphy wouldnt do that he never chases sheep' , or 'no its not my dog' ,or' oh he must have been frightened by them' lol , if you shoot the dog and go looking for compo look out!! chances are you'll never get a penny but you will get a whole world of hassle from every direction ,if you catch the dog and go to the owner you'll get sfa in my experience only abuse ,Therefore for me if its chasing sheep not a lost or escaped pet just in the same field then its shoot shovel and shut up end of
 

VSS

Well-Known Member
Just to throw another complication into the mix, I found some exemptions to dogs that can be shot.

  • The above defence does not apply to all dogs: sheepdogs, police dogs, guide dogs, working gun dogs and pack hounds are all exempt and under no circumstances should be shot.
About 2 months ago we were sitting in the garden enjoying a drink (coffee in my case, before you jump to conclusions) when the master of the local staghounds appeared and said they had just hunted a stag into my deer paddocks. This is by no means the first time this has happened. A brief discussion came to the choice of letting it out or shooting it. I asked him which was his preferred option; he said shooting it. I asked what he had available, he said a 12 bore. I grabbed my rifle and shot the stag. He was in such a state that I doubt he would have lasted 24 hours if I had let him out. Fortunately I am old enough that my anger came second to my concern to give the stag a quick death.
Now technically stag hunting is still legal I believe, as long as they only use 2 hounds at a time (not the case here) but imagine if they had all started hunting my deer around in the paddocks. The above quoted bit of legislation says *pack hounds are exempt and under no circumstances should be shot"

So a bunch of people quasi-legally hunting have more rights than I do to protect my own livestock.

We all know that laws are a woefully inadequate way to attempt to control people and that in extreme circumstances you will do whatever you have to to protect your family and your means of livelihood. Just hope you do not find yourselves in such a position.
See my point 8 in post #20 ;)

Having said that, I did once shoot a foxhound. I was about 15 at the time, and used my father's shotgun. The police were involved, and I got compensation for 2 ewes that aborted and died after the stress. The police also suggested that I ought to apply for a SGC, in case it happened again, so I did!
 

slider

Well-Known Member
Just to throw another complication into the mix, I found some exemptions to dogs that can be shot.

  • The above defence does not apply to all dogs: sheepdogs, police dogs, guide dogs, working gun dogs and pack hounds are all exempt and under no circumstances should be shot.
Sorry but you are cherry picking pargraphes from legislation here and quoting out of context.
The paragraph you quote above is from the Dogs (Protection of livestock) Act 1953. That Act makes no reference to the circumstance in which you can shoot a worrying dog. Tp put it into contect I have added further wording from this Act below.
1 Penalty where dog worries livestock on agricultural land.E+W
(1)Subject to the provisions of this section, if a dog worries livestock on any agricultural land, the owner of the dog, and, if it is in the charge of a person other than its owner, that person also, shall be guilty of an offence under this Act.
(2)For the purposes of this Act worrying livestock means—
(a)attacking livestock, or
(b)chasing livestock in such a way as may reasonably be expected to cause injury or suffering to the livestock or, in the case of females, abortion, or loss of or diminution in their produce.
or
(c)being at large (that is to say not on a lead or otherwise under close control) in a field or enclosure in which there are sheep
(2A)Subsection (2)(c) of this section shall not apply in relation to—
(a)a dog owned by, or in the charge of, the occupier of the field or enclosure or the owner of the sheep or a person authorised by either of those persons; or
(b)a police dog, a guide dog, trained sheep dog, a working gun dog or a pack of hounds.

So in the proper interpretation "a police dog, a guide dog, trained sheep dog, a working gun dog or a pack of hounds." only applies in relation to "being at large (that is to say not on a lead or otherwise under close control) in a field or enclosure in which there are sheep"

The legislation that does provide a defence for killing a worrying dog is the Animals Act 1971 and a quote below (note no mention of police dog, a guide dog, trained sheep dog, a working gun dog or a pack of hounds)

9 Killing of or injury to dogs worrying livestock.
(1)In any civil proceedings against a person (in this section referred to as the defendant) for killing or causing injury to a dog it shall be a defence to prove—

(a)that the defendant acted for the protection of any livestock and was a person entitled to act for the protection of that livestock; and

(b)that within forty-eight hours of the killing or injury notice thereof was given by the defendant to the officer in charge of a police station.

(2)For the purposes of this section a person is entitled to act for the protection of any livestock if, and only if—

(a)the livestock or the land on which it is belongs to him or to any person under whose express or implied authority he is acting; and

(b)the circumstances are not such that liability for killing or causing injury to the livestock would be excluded by section 5(4) of this Act.

(3)Subject to subsection (4) of this section, a person killing or causing injury to a dog shall be deemed for the purposes of this section to act for the protection of any livestock if, and only if, either—

(a)the dog is worrying or is about to worry the livestock and there are no other reasonable means of ending or preventing the worrying; or

(b)the dog has been worrying livestock, has not left the vicinity and is not under the control of any person and there are no practicable means of ascertaining to whom it belongs.

(4)For the purposes of this section the condition stated in either of the paragraphs of the preceding subsection shall be deemed to have been satisfied if the defendant believed that it was satisfied and had reasonable ground for that belief.

(5)For the purposes of this section—

(a)an animal belongs to any person if he owns it or has it in his possession; and

(b)land belongs to any person if he is the occupier thereof

While I am not a lawyer I have spent a considerable time researching this subject, as an agricultural advisor, and have written papers on teh subject that have been vetted by our lawyers
 

caorach

Well-Known Member
Any bit of the law that says "it shall be a defence to prove..." should also have to contain the words "This option is only open to very rich people who have the cash for barristers and expert witnesses to provide a legal and professional basis for such a proof."
 

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