George Adams (retired) huntsman of the Fitzwilliam Hunt along with Bird of Prey Handler John Mease appeared before Peterborough Magistrates court on the 31st August after their case had been adjourned in July. Both men are charged with hunting a fox with dogs on New Years’ Day this year, while Mease also faces a count of causing unnecessary suffering to a fox, when a golden eagle killed the animal in November 2013. Both men pleaded not guilty to the charges, and will stand trial later this year. Sam Wooley, prosecuting, told the court: “These are two separate offences. The first offence took place on January 1st, 2016, when the defendants were with the Fitzwilliam Hunt. It is said that the hunt used hounds to kill a fox. It is said the hounds were not called off quickly enough, and they killed the fox. We say Mr Adams’ role was he was leading the hunt. He was the person who gives commands to the hounds. The second offence relates to the use of a golden eagle by Mease. It is said the eagle killed the fox in an inhumane way.”
The Hunting Act case will be heard on the 5th December and the cruelty case on the 8th December, both at Peterborough Magistrates Court.