Yesterday, 1 June, a man appeared at Swindon Magistrates Court charged with a number of wildlife and firearms offences. The person in question is not a member of the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation.
He pled guilty to possessing a number of dead birds - including nine raptors - and a numbers of firearms offences. He received a community order with 180 hours unpaid work and was ordered to pay £393 costs and £95 surcharge.
As the lead body for gamekeeping, the NGO has a responsibility to protect the reputation of the gamekeeping sector. We have a no-tolerance approach to any kind of wildlife crime, and expect our members to adhere to the Code of Good Shooting Practice. This is regularly reinforced to our members.
As stated, the man in question is not a member of the NGO – however, behaviour such as this brings the name of gamekeeping into disrepute, and damages the hard work that gamekeepers carry out every day of the week, all across the country. As such, we were hugely disappointed to hear the details of this case.
We would like to thank Wiltshire Police for the hard work involved in bringing this case to court.
NGO disciplinary matters are decided by our disciplinary committee, and decisions made on a case-by-case basis. More information on the NGO’s disciplinary procedure can be found here: https://www.nationalgamekeepers.org.uk/policy/ngo-disciplinary-procedure