Three vixen killers guilty

The RSPCA claimed another victory in its first ever fox hunting court case when a third defendant pleaded guilty.

In the first prosecution of its kind under the Hunting Act 2004, Mark Walsh, 18, of Netherton, and Terence Williams, 15, of Maghull, pleaded guilty on October 16 to hunting on foot with dogs in Great Barrow. Now Paul Kelly, 21, of Norris Green, Liverpool has been sentenced for his part in the illegal hunt.

Chester Magistrates heard how four men were spotted on Ferma Lane on January 11 along with six dogs.

Christopher Johnson, told how the men dug into a badger breeding sett used by foxes and rabbits. Putting two dogs into the sett, the men allowed their animals to kill a vixen. Mr Johnson said a post mortem on the fox suggested it had been killed by a dog.

Richard Thomas, defending, said: ‘His mitigation is fairly limited. The fox was killed very very quickly, in a matter of seconds.’ Mr Thomas stressed the party had no contact with badgers.

On Monday, Kelly, unemployed and on benefits, was sentenced to a £500 fine and £2,846.09 costs. Kelly also signed over his tan female terrier, Digger, which was taken to be rehoused.