Two Chester men fined almost £1k and given five-year criminal behaviour orders for hare poaching across Lancashire

Two men were fined almost £1k and given five-year criminal behaviour orders after being caught poaching across Lancashire.

By Sean Gleaves
Tuesday, 5th July 2022, 4:45 pm
Updated Tuesday, 5th July 2022, 6:51 pm

Warren Kelly, 35, and Andrew Dutton, 58, were convicted of four offences under the Game Act and two offences under the Hunting Act for hare coursing in Ormskirk.

Kelly, of Sycamore Drive, and Dutton, of Clover Place, were subsequently given five-year criminal behaviour orders (CBOs).

They were also handed near £1k in fines and costs and had their poaching equipment forfeited from them.

Andrew Dutton (pictured left) and Warren Kelly (pictured right) were given five-year criminal behaviour orders for hare poaching in West Lancashire (Credit: Lancashire Police)

Police said the pair were known to poach all over Lancashire, Lincolnshire, Humberside, Merseyside, North Wales, Cheshire, West Mercia, Shropshire and Bedfordshire.

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South Rural Police Task Force officer PC Paddy Stewart said: “This is not ‘one for the pot’ poaching.

“These offenders travel around the country committing cruel acts towards our wildlife and whilst doing so wreak havoc on our rural communities.

The CBOs also prohibit the pair from entering huge portions of Lancashire and Merseyside (Credit: Lancashire Police)

“Farmers regularly tell me of threats and intimidation when they challenge trespassers on their land who are involved in poaching.

“Many people won’t know that the brown hare is listed as a conservation priority in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan, meaning we should be doing all we can to protect this vulnerable species.”

The CBOs ban the pair from being in possession of a dog – or being with any person with a dog – other than in their home address.

They also prohibit them from entering huge portions of Lancashire and Merseyside and from acting in a manner that is likely to cause harassment, alarm and distress.

The bans are in place until June 29, 2027.

If they breach the order, anything in their possession at the time, including vehicles and dogs, will be forfeited.

Sgt Darren Car added: “The measures farmers have to put in place to deter these offenders cost considerable amounts of money which in turn is passed onto food consumers.

“I am extremely proud of my team’s hard work in securing these convictions and orders for our community.

“Due to the feeling of isolation in rural areas and previous experience of threats, it takes great courage for farmers to step forward and we will continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with them in the fight against wildlife crimes and animal cruelty.”

The areas covered in the ban include: Tarleton, Hesketh Banks, Banks, Sollom, Rufford, Merebrow, Burscough, Ormskirk, Downholland, Halsall, Altcar, Scarisbrick, Aughton, Southport, Bickerstaffe, Simonswood, Ainsdale / Hillside / Birkdale, Churchtown, Kew, Croston, Dalton, Newburgh, Lathom, Mawdsley, Wrightington, Hilldale, Parbold, Appley Bridge, Roby Mill, Ince, Blundell, Maghull, Kirkby, Lydiate and Melling.

Anyone who sees the two men in the West Lancashire area can report their breach by calling 101 or reporting it online at lancashire.police.uk/reportonline.

The South Rural Crime Task Force also can be contacted on [email protected]