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Criminal charge dropped against only Gloucestershire badger cull protester accused of breaching injunction

By EchoLauraC  |  Posted: May 29, 2014

A badger

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A criminal charge against the only badger cull protestor in the UK accused of breaching an injunction has been dropped by the Crown Prosecution Service.

Gloucester Crown Court heard the CPS would be offering no evidence against Cathy Scott, who travelled to Gloucestershire last year in a bid to campaign against the controversial cull.

A High Court injunction banned anyone from protesting within 100 metres of homes or using torches, LED lights and camera flashes near the cull zone.

The 37-year-old, who has animal pawprints tattooed on her neck, was accused of running into the badger cull zone at Tibberton near Newent shouting and waving a torch on October 3, 2013.

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She was formally found not guilty on Thursday afternoon and will now be able to apply for her legal costs to be covered.

Prosecutor Stephen Jones said no evidence was offered in the case and requested Ms Scott was found not guilty.

The court previously heard Ms Scott, from Pepys Corner, Tile Hill in Coventry was planning a legal challenge against the charge in a bid to get it dismissed.

Mr Jones said since that hearing in March this year the case file had been reviewed by the CPS and police officers.

He said: “A decision was taken to take the course that the crown do today.

“In taking that decision it should not be viewed as an acceptance of references made in writing.”

Judge Jamie Tabor QC said Ms Scott must submit her costs to the court.

He added: “You have obviously thought carefully about this and I have no intention of interfering with your decision.”

Ms Scott did not appear at the Longsmith Street court in Gloucester to hear the news.

The injunction was taken out by the National Farmers’ Union in August of last year after fears farmers and landowners would be harassed during the badger killings.

The cull was instigated by the government in a bid to tackle bovine tuberculosis.

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  • mmjames  |  June 13 2014, 11:52PM

    This is taken from the excellent paper http://tinyurl.com/movacn8 written by Roger Blowey FRCVS. There have now been six culling trials, and all have shown a reduction in bovine bTB, even the most recent Krebs trial, which was least effective and achieved by far the poorest level of badger culling Area (sq km) % elimination of badgers by culling Reduction in TB herd outbreaks [full chart on link] Thornbury Gloucestershire (1970's) 104 100% Clear for 10 years Steeple Leaze, Dorset 12 100% Clear for 7 years Hartland Point Devon 64 ..80% 80-90% reduction – 10y East Offaly, Ireland 738 ...80% 88% reduction – 7y Four Counties, Ireland 100 x 4 ...80% 60-80% reduction RBCTs (Krebs), UK (1998 – 2004) 100 x 10 30 – 70% 19 -23% reduction inside 22- 29% increase outside ............................................................................................................... But of course "culling doesn't work"

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  • mmjames  |  June 12 2014, 10:29AM

    http://tinyurl.com/movacn8 Article by Roger Blowey FRCVS, Bovine TB Past and Present- is there hope for the future(New version) June 11, 2014

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  • twigcat  |  May 29 2014, 5:35PM

    My congratulations and very best wishes to Cathy. She should never have been put through this ordeal and I hope she is suitably recompensed.

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  • transcendant  |  May 29 2014, 3:49PM

    The real criminals are those involved in this 'cull'. Bovine TBexperts,ProfessorDonnelly and Dr Woodruffe, stated before the commencement of the 'cull' that estimating the proportion of badgers culled within a given area would be extremely difficult to achieve due to uncertain badger estimates, so this constitutes a flagrant contravention of the Berne Convention since the species could well disappear in local areas. Moreover, since Owen Paterson has declared that this 'cull' (massacre) is to continue for the next 25 years, it is obvious that there will be few if any badgers left alive. Professor Andrew Linzey of Oxford University has called for the citizens' arrest of all those involved in this massacre. No one seriously believes that farmers are going to count numbers. They have been illegally killing badgers for years, and dumping their corpses by the roadsides, and they will slaughter every badger they come across. These are the same people that were feeding their herbivorous cows on the corpses of other animals, thereby converting them into carnivores and even cannibals, and consequently giving rise to CJD in humans. They have caused Tb in their own cattle by subjecting them to appalling maltreatment, and now they wish to scapegoat the badgers that have had the misfortune to contract TB from the cattle. When this criminal act fails to eradicate the disease, they will turn their attention to the other forms of wildlife that also carry TB. They are already intending to slaughter half the deer population, but dare not mention the fact that deer carry TB, since this would decimate the venison industry.

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  • Clued-Up  |  May 29 2014, 3:38PM

    The process this case has taken is illuminating - from the high profile, well publicised arrest amid allegations Cathy Scott had "stolen" one of the shooter's rifles to the last-minute, grudging admission by the Crown Prosecution Service they didn't have a decent case against her. I'm delighted for Cathy that she's now been cleared of charges which arguably should NEVER have been put. I hope her legal costs claim is able to include adequate financial recompense for the distress and worry she's been caused so unnecessarily.

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