Leicestershire Police issued a press release on 21 June stating that it has charged William Hanson, huntsman of the Fernie Hunt, with illegally hunting a fox. The charge relates to an incident on 8 January near Peatling Magna.

Keep The Ban understands the evidence against Hanson was put forward by a member of the public.

A report by LeicestershireLive said a fox was seen on the day in question by a “large crowd of onlookers” running through Peatling Magna. The creature was followed by hounds and riders in a scene described as “totally chaotic”. Local paper Harborough Mail previously quoted Chris Parker, master of the Fernie Hunt, as saying:

“There was a horrendous storm and a few of our hounds became disorientated.

“The dogs ran off into the village but we soon got them back again.”

Hanson will appear at Leicester Magistrates Court on 13 July.

This is the latest in a string of hunt-related charges against hunt members. Following Paul O’Shea’s guilty plea to offences under the Hunting Act and Animal Welfare Act on 22 June, Keep The Ban believe there are 10 active cases.

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