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Snare charges against game keeper dropped by Crown Office

Released to press on 13 March 2016

OneKind calls for changes in law after ‘totally unacceptable’ suffering of snared fox

The trial of a gamekeeper accused of snaring offences based on evidence supplied by animal welfare charity OneKind has been blocked by the Crown Office.

William Curr, a gamekeeper on the Glenogil Estate in Angus was due to stand trial on Monday 9 May for charges relating to snaring. OneKind supplied the evidence for the case which included harrowing footage of a fox trapped in a snare which had died of dehydration.

Video footage and a catalogue of images (images and footage available on request), some extremely graphic, were obtained by the charity during a visit to the estate on 26 September 2014.

Mr Curr was facing charges of failing to inspect a snare which killed a deer on the Glenogil Estate, Angus, in August 2014 and failing to keep a record of finding a deer in a snare. It was also alleged that he failed to check another snare for more than 24 hours, during which time a fox became trapped and died of dehydration. The charges were brought under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, which prohibits certain methods of killing or taking wild animals and requires inspection of snares every 24 hours, with removal of any live or dead animals that are found.

OneKind’s field research officer visited Glenogil Estate on that date to gather evidence of legal snare use, in support of OneKind’s campaign for a ban on these traps. During his visit he found two foxes caught in snares, both of which had been trapped around their abdomen. One of the foxes was dead and one was still alive, clearly distressed with a large wound where the snare had cut into its flesh. The Scottish SPCA was called out to the estate where the fox had to be humanely dispatched, due to the severity of its injuries.

OneKind’s Libby Anderson said: “OneKind is appalled that this case is not to proceed given the eye witness evidence, the horrific video footage and the detailed follow-up investigation carried out by the Scottish SPCA.

snared fox

snared dead fox


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