Four guilty after hare coursing crackdown
Four men have been found guilty of using dogs to chase and injure hares in the Stirling area.
The accused - Steven Brown (31), William Mcphee (53), William Mcphee (31), and Alexander Mcallister (47) - were sentenced for hare coursing on Monday at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.
Police say that, following a detective probe, they traced and stopped a Subaru in Stirling in April 2020.
The four men were charged for crimes in Stirling and the Borders and the dogs inside the car seized.
Hare coursing is a wildlife crime where dogs such as sigh hounds namely lurcher type dogs are used to illegally chase, catch, injure and kill hares.
A Police spokeswoman said: “As a result of an intelligence lead operation, Wildlife Crime Officers successfully secured the conviction of four men involved in hare coursing in Stirling and Borders area.
“On Monday, 29 April 2020, a silver Subaru Forester was stopped by police officers near to Kippen roundabout, Stirling.
“Steven Brown (31), William Mcphee (53), William Mcphee (31), and Alexander Mcallister (47) were arrested and charged with hare coursing offences throughout Stirling and the Borders. The car and dogs were seized.
“The men were sentenced at Edinburgh Sheriff Court on Monday, 6 February, 2023.
“All were found guilty which resulted in a driving ban, disqualification from owning dogs, community payback order and compensation order totalling 720 hours and £1,300.”
Wildlife Crime Police Officer, PC Laura Robertson, based at Dunblane Police Station, said:
“Hare-coursing is a barbaric “sport” which involves a range of offences including animal welfare, damage to property, road traffic offences, violent and threatening behaviour.
“I would encourage the public that if they suspect hare coursing is taking place to call 101 or 999 if an incident is ongoing.
“Also, if anyone has information regarding individuals whom they suspect of being involved in hare coursing, you can provide this anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”