Newport hare coursers fined

THREE men have been fined �1,000 and banned from driving after they admitted to hare coursing in Newport.

Police were called after members of the public saw a hare being chased and killed by two dogs released by the men on fields near Bury Water Lane, Newport in December last year.

Officers from the Aviation Security Team at Stansted Airport were on patrol nearby and responded to a 999 call from the witnesses who described how the men were driving away in a car.

The car was intercepted nearby and the three men were arrested. They appeared at Harlow Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday (March 27) where they admitted hare coursing.

Thomas Connors, 33, of Wallington, Surrey, Patrick Connors, 31 of Keston, Kent and John Reading, 28, of Croydon, south London were also ordered to pay costs of �210 each.

Magistrates also approved a police application for all three men to be banned from driving for using a vehicle for use in crime. Thomas Connors was disqualified for six months and Patrick Connors and Reading were each banned for three months.

Sgt Dominic Farrington, of the Aviation Security Team at Stansted Airport, said: “Hare coursing causes disruption and misery to the lives of people living in our rural communities. Those involved often drive recklessly across fields, inevitably causing extensive damage to crops, and it will not be tolerated.”

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Essex police have asked for all suspected incidents of hare coursing to be reported immediately as a crime in progress by dialling 999.