Two Belvoir Hunt men convicted of assault against animal rights investigators

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Two members of the same family were convicted at Leicester Crown Court on Tuesday of seriously assaulting two animal rights investigators who were monitoring a fox hunt on behalf of animal welfare charity, League Against Cruel Sports.

George Grant, 57, and 25-year-old Thomas Grant, both of Belvoir, Leicestershire, pleaded guilty to charges read to them on the first day of a trial at Leicester Crown Court.

Both men pleaded to the charges of Section 20 GBH, theft, criminal damage to property and assault ABH.

The charges relate to an incident which took place on land off Tofts Lane in Eaton on 12 March 2016, when two men, 59 and 46, sustained injuries following an assault.

PC Stuart Venables, the investigating officer, said: “Both victims of this incident were injured with one of them requiring hospital treatment.

“We take crimes of this nature seriously and we will seek to prosecute those responsible. We are pleased that the defendants pleaded guilty today.”

They are due to be sentenced on 14 June at Leicester Crown Court.

Darryl Cunnington, League Against Cruel Sports Head of Field Operations, was treated for broken neck vertebrae after the incident, which took place as they monitored the activities of the Belvoir Hunt.

He said: “Hopefully this will send out a message to all hunts that they cannot carry out assaults on people who wish to monitor their activities. If they are operating within the law as they claim, then they have nothing to hide.

“By attacking monitors and stealing camera equipment they have shown they fear their hunting activities being recorded, and the possibility of prosecution.

“I am very lucky that the assault has left me with no long-term serious injuries.”