Police Helicopter Traps Poachers On Farm Land at Little Downham

PUBLISHED: 11:48 15 June 2009 | UPDATED: 10:56 04 May 2010

A POLICE helicopter trapped poachers on farm land at Little Downham after they were spotted with dogs on the site. A vigilant passing motorist had raised the alarm after seeing four men walking down a track with greyhound type dogs, and took a note of the

A POLICE helicopter trapped poachers on farm land at Little Downham after they were spotted with dogs on the site.

A vigilant passing motorist had raised the alarm after seeing four men walking down a track with greyhound type dogs, and took a note of their vehicle's number plate details.

"When police officers arrived at Downham Road, Little Downham, they went down a drove and saw four men with three dogs," prosecutor Laura Mardell told Ely magistrates.

"They monitored the situation for some time, and saw a dog chase a small animal. The group then split up, with two going in one direction, and two going another way.

"Jimmy Jones and John Marston were trapped by the police helicopter, and they were arrested. The owner of the land, Thomas Jackson, said he had not given them permission to go on to his land. "

Jones, 24, of Shilton, Coventry, admitted poaching at Orwell Pit Farm in Little Downham on January 16; and co-defendant Marston, 22, of Sapcote, Leicester, was convicted of the same offence in his absence.

Representing Jones, solicitor Jacqui Baldwin said her client was disabled, and had never been in trouble before.

Giving Jones a 12-month conditional discharge, presiding magistrate Mary Rone told him: "You know the folly of being involved in something like this, poaching is illegal. Don't be coerced into joining groups of people coming to this area for poaching, you could get into really serious trouble, courts do not look favourably on poachers."

Because the court is considering imposing a driving ban on Marston, his sentencing was adjourned until July 2.

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