No fox hunting convictions in Scotland since ban came in 13 years ago
The fox-hunting ban isn’t worth the paper it is written on according to a Scottish animal welfare charity.
With the beginning of November marking the start of the hunting season, OneKind is calling on the Scottish Government to strengthen the law which bans fox hunting in Scotland.
The charity claims despite the Protection of Wild Mammals (Scotland) Act 2002 being in its 13th year there has been no convictions for those ignoring the ban as loopholes are still being exploited.
Very little has changed over the years and hunts are continuing to hunt as they did before the legislation was implemented according to OneKind director Harry Huyton.
Fox hunting is apparently banned in Scotland, yet from this weekend hunts will be going out, seeking and killing foxes
“Fox hunting is apparently banned in Scotland, yet from this weekend hunts will be going out, seeking and killing foxes,” Huyton said.
“In all this time, very little has changed as a result of loopholes in the original legislation that in effect allow this cruel and outdated practice to continue.
“The Scottish Government has committed to reviewing the legislation and OneKind would like to see this carried out as an urgent priority with outcomes that finally make the ban worth the paper it’s written on.”
Before the hunting ban was passed in 2002 there were 10 operational mounted fox hunts in Scotland.
OneKind says there are still 10 today and there have been no successful prosecutions of mounted hunts under the act, whereas in England and Wales there have been a series of prosecutions under what it describes as the more robust Hunting Act.
The latest Scottish Government report into wildlife crime shows that only five cases associated with mounted fox hunt activities have been reported to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service since 2003, and none of these resulted in a conviction.
Huyton added: “The time has come for a speedy and determined review of the legislation to finally do what the law was intended for: banning fox hunting.”