Persistent hare courser admits breach of community protection notice

Mon, 09 Nov 2020

A Hartlepool man who was given a community protection notice (CPN) for persistently coursing for hares in the East Riding has become the first person in the country to breach such a notice for hare coursing.

Michael Lund, 51, of Lazenby Road, Hartlepool, did not appear at Hull Magistrates' Court on Friday, 6 October but pleaded guilty to the breach of the notice by post.

Lund was first issued with a CPN in October 2019 after he had been seen in a number of East Riding locations, including Asselby, Halsham, Paull, Harpham, Holmpton, Nafferton and Lowthorpe, coursing for hares.

On 24 January, 2020, Lund had returned to Nafferton and Lowthorpe area to course for hares when he was stopped by Humberside Police and although no offences had been committed under the Hunting or Game Act, his dog was not wearing a collar and he was therefore in breach of his CPN.

Lund failed to pay a fixed penalty notice which resulted in the case being brought to court and he was fined £293, has to pay costs of £333.39 and a victim surcharge of £32.

Nigel Brignall, anti-social behaviour manager at East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: "The council works closes with Humberside Police to deal robustly with people who travel to the East Riding to course for hares which causes fear in rural communities and damage to farmland.

"Dogs are known to brutally kill hares and there is no excuse for Michael Lund, or anyone else, to behave in such a cruel and insensitive manner.

PC Richard Fussey, wildlife and heritage crime officer for Humberside Police, said: "Hare coursing is an ongoing issue in the rural East Riding that we are working closely with both landowners and the East Riding of Yorkshire Council to combat it.

 "Offenders often cause significant damage to crops and repeated incidents continue to alarm the local residents.

 "Humberside Police take the issue of hare coursing very seriously and with Operation Galileo (an operation set up to specifically target offences relating to hare coursing) we continue to have dedicated patrols across the East Riding on a weekly basis throughout the hare coursing season.

 "These patrols act as both a deterrent to the offenders and to enable us to locate and deal with those responsible.

"The prosecution of Michael Lund is a rewarding outcome for the partnership that continues between the East Riding of Yorkshire Council, local residents and Humberside Police. 

"It should also act as a deterrent to those who think that the East Riding is an easy target for hare coursing.  If caught we can and will bring proceedings against those looking to harm our precious local wildlife."

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