Template letter to – Mr Martin Hewitt (NPCC Chairman)
Letter to NPCC Chairman, Mr Martin Hewitt regarding the lack of police prevention, action and strategy relating to hunting crimes
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Subject : Police Crime Prevention Strategy
Dear Martin Hewitt (NPCC Chairman),
Policing is not just about catching criminals and prosecuting them, it’s also about preventing the crime in the first instance.
The police pride themselves on “Crime Prevention” but in 15 years of the Hunting Act the majority of police forces have failed dramatically to prevent illegal hunting and all its associated crimes.
The directive for policing strategy comes from the NPCC.
The annual report on wildlife crime by the Wildlife and Countryside Link (WCL) an umbrella group of 57 organisations, reveals wildlife crime in Britain is rampant with “shockingly low conviction rates”.
Experts say, the exploitation of wildlife is going unabated.
Fox, deer and hare hunting by hunts is one of the worst examples of police crime prevention failings.
The report condemns a “concerning lack of progress” by the National Police Chiefs Council wildlife crime strategy in reducing crimes and increasing prosecutions.
The majority of police forces fail to even list foxhunting as a crime on their websites or in their wildlife crime strategy.
Hunts across the country continue to chase and kill wildlife under the guise of Trail hunting with very little intervention from Police Rural Crime teams who have been accused of turning a blind eye and just policing hunts for public disorder under the directive from the NPCC.
On a rare occasion, you get a good police force that actually does intervene and stop hunts from their weekly bloodlust (Gloucestershire).
Cumbria Police Force must also be congratulated for their hunting awareness poster series.
I welcome this step in the right direction.
Sadly the majority of Rural Crime Teams remain pro hunt, biased and non-impartial.
It seems two of the worst Rural Police Crime Teams in the country are Cheshire and North Wales, where Sgt Rob Simpson (Cheshire Rural Crime Team) and Mr Rob Taylor (North Wales rural crime manager) have developed a reputation for supporting hunts by detaining monitors on fabricated charges to enable hunts to continue hunting foxes.
This is absolutely appalling behaviour by these rural crime teams and brings the whole police force into disrepute.
They have been known to blatantly lie and mislead the public regarding these monitor removal operations. “Shocking”
It is vitally important the police are seen to be impartial and non-biased in hunting matters to restore public confidence and trust.
A crime prevention strategy is urgently needed.
This brings me to the matter of what preventative measures/strategy have the NPCC put in place to prevent illegal hunting and all of the hunts’ associated crimes?
Questions : Preventative measures
- Have the police compiled a public awareness campaign to inform the public of what to look for with illegal hunting? Only Cumbria police appear to have done this.
- Have the police raised the point of illegal hunting on their websites or decided not to inform the public about illegal foxhunting?
- Have the police contacted their local anti hunt groups for a pre-season meeting to ensure an effective, workable and realistic plan is in place (not just lip service for the gullible)?
- Have the police attended courses to recognise horn calls which control hounds and encourage them to intentionally chase foxes? Do RCT only attend courses presented by hunting & shooting organisations which results in biased policing?
- Have the police conducted operations, as they do with hare coursing for which they seem to have the funds?
- Have the police increased their presence out in the field on hunting days to prevent illegal hunting or do the police still sit in their cars and watch the hunts go by?
- Do the police still have the NPCC directive to just police hunts for public disorder or are they now going to actually uphold the law on illegal hunting and all its associated crimes as well?
- Have the police adopted the use of drones to follow hunts to ensure they do not illegally hunt foxes, hare, deer and mink?
- Have police increased their surveillance of hunt kennels to ensure the hunts are not using live foxes (bait) to teach hounds to kill?
- Have the police started to enforce the law regarding the use of illegal quad bikes on roads by hunts. ie overloaded, no tax, no insurance, not road safe?
- Have the police ensured hunts are not blocking roads trying to prevent monitors collecting evidence?
- Have the police ensured monitors are not intimidated, assaulted and threatened by hunts and their followers?
- Has the PCC ensured an effective allocation of funds has been set aside to deal with illegal fox hunting i.e the same as they do with hare coursing and poaching etc …. or is the practice of cherry picking which laws to uphold still in place?
- Have the police corrected their “reporting a hunting crime” priority point allocation scale which seems to list any hunt related reported crime as low priority?
- Do the police stop and search terriermen to ensure they are not carrying equipment to illegally dig out foxes, ask to see the appropriate written permission and gun licence requirements to legally dispatch foxes?
- Do the police ensure that badger setts are not destroyed / blocked by hunt terriermen or do they even check this?
- Have the police ensured an effective plan is put into place to prevent hounds running dangerously uncontrolled on the roads dodging in between traffic putting motorists lives at risk?
- Do the police ensure the hounds are not fouling in public places or do we have double standards and laws for hunts and their dogs? Do police ensure hounds are micro chipped (according to the law) and can be identified when left dead at the side of the road or on a railway line?
- Are the police ensuring hunts are not trespassing on land they do not have permission to be on?
- What preventative strategy do the police have in place to ensure hunts do not invade public places and attack domestic animals?
- Have the police ensured that hunt riders are not galloping up main roads, dangerously jumping fences from main roads, putting the welfare of their horse at risk and other road users and what strategy have the police put into place to prevent this reckless behaviour?
- Do the police actually enforce, prevent or collect evidence of any of the above? If so why aren’t we seeing more arrests to restore public faith in police or to convince the public that police are actually doing their job upholding the law?
- What preventative measures/strategy have the police put in place to prevent illegal hunting taking place and all of the hunts’ associated crimes?
The public should not have to do the job of policing hunts and collecting evidence for the police.
We all know hunts continue to illegally hunt. Only the naive or those with a hidden agenda for foxhunting to continue would believe the blatant lie about trail hunting.
Could you please clearly set out your prevention strategy to each of the above 23 questions?
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