Two found guilty of fox-hunting law breach

The conviction marks the first successful prosecution for fox hunting in Scotland.
The conviction marks the first successful prosecution for fox hunting in Scotland.
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Two men have been convicted of breaching fox-hunting laws in the first successful prosecution of its kind in Scotland.

Father and son John Clive Richardson, 67 and Johnathan Riley, 24, from the Scottish Borders, both denied deliberately hunting a wild mammal on land surrounding Townfoothill near Jedburgh on 18 February, 2016.

The men, from Abbotrule, Bonchester Bridge, were found guilty after a trial at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

READ MORE: Fox hunting laws in Scotland set to be strengthened

Video evidence showed the pair breaching the Protection of Wild Mammals (Scotland) Act 2002.

Robbie Marsland, director of the League Against Cruel Sports, Scotland, said: “Today’s guilty verdict is the first successful prosecution for mounted fox hunting in Scotland and while we’re delighted with the outcome and our role in this, we remain of the view that the law needs strengthened.

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“The Scottish Government has committed to consult on the hunt ban following a review by Lord Bonomy, who clearly stated there was evidence of lawbreaking by Scottish hunts.

“We look forward to working with the Scottish Government to strengthen the law and hope today sends a clear message to hunts that flouting the law will not be tolerated and those who continue to hunt illegally in Scotland will be brought to justice.”