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Peak District Gamekeeper Sentenced

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Old Wednesday 25th February 2004, 20:04   #1
Pie Face
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Peak District Gamekeeper Sentenced

Unless you live in the Yorks'/East Midlands area you may not have seen this news item.

Regards

Mark


Guilty gamekeeper avoids prison


Cripps destroyed the goshawk's eggs and nest
A gamekeeper convicted of destroying the nest and eggs of a rare bird of prey has been given a three-month suspended jail sentence.
John Cripps, 60, used tree climbing spikes to disturb the goshawk nest in Derbyshire's Derwent Valley.

He told a wildlife officer too many of the birds were attacking grouse.

Cripps, of Ronksley, Derbyshire, was found guilty of three offences under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 after a three-day trial in January.


Peregrine nests

The district judge at Buxton said he took into account Cripps' age and the fact that he may lose his job and house, in deciding the sentence.

The RSPB says the verdict sends out a strong warning to others.

Buxton Magistrates' Court heard earlier that the gamekeeper, who looks after a private shooting estate in the valley, was confronted by conservation volunteers in April 2002.

He told them he believed there were too many goshawks in the area and that "something must be done", wildlife officer Stephen Downing told the court.

A few days later, volunteers returned to find a huge nest - the size of a man - damaged and its eggs smashed.

He also kept a diary with entries believed to relate to the persecution of other species in the area, such as peregrine falcons, ravens and a sparrowhawk, a court heard in January.

Cripps was convicted of recklessly disturbing a goshawk while it was on a nest containing eggs and intentionally destroying the eggs of a goshawk.

Cripps was found not guilty of 16 other offences
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Old Wednesday 25th February 2004, 20:36   #2
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Why suspended ? Lock him up.

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Old Wednesday 25th February 2004, 22:20   #3
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Yeah, lock him up, and have his job, and pension, stopped.

Wonder if he ever stopped to think, if he left the Goshawks alone, he wouldn't have half as many Magpies . . . .

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Old Wednesday 25th February 2004, 22:26   #4
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Nah...prisons too easy for scum like him.....stick him in a room with a load of birders!!!!!!

GILL XXX
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Old Wednesday 25th February 2004, 22:40   #5
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Bravo! At least the courts are beginning to do something!

Although I agree he shouldn't have gotten a suspended sentence.
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Old Wednesday 25th February 2004, 22:51   #6
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At the risk of being shot down in flames can I appeal for a modicum of common sense and compassion....

Yes, the guy's a pillock but does he deserve to lose everything for poisoning birds? That won't do anyone any good, wont change his attitude and will probably make things worse. With all the bad stuff that goes on in the world and people don't even get suspended sentences, I think we need to put LIFE into perspective and not go off on one just because it's a case involving a bird. We can appear a bit trainspottery if we get this obsessive.....

A lengthy spot of community service for the RSPB might work a little better and provide some hands on conservation labour too.....might even result in a new birder!
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Old Wednesday 25th February 2004, 23:25   #7
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They got him at last, GOOD, it's about time, he's been getting away with it for years. He's been partly responsible for the loss of Goshawk nests in these areas for many years, it's difficult to stop these criminals unless they are actually caught in the act.

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Old Thursday 26th February 2004, 03:08   #8
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Tim, you make a good point, but what are chances, really, of the courts mandating this kind of 'community service'? It's a wonderful idea, but one that seldom seems to be used.
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Old Thursday 26th February 2004, 07:46   #9
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I used to respect the British Justice system, but recent events children knocked down and killed by a banned driver who only goes to jail for a couple of months. A nest robber one of the first actually brought to court and sentenced, the Judge at Buxton had a chance to make a name for himself in upholding the law and he missed it by being so lenient. I bet he wouldn't have done it in Saudi Arabia!!!
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Old Thursday 26th February 2004, 19:35   #10
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I believe that the offender should have been made to attend the likes of an rspb reserve where he could learn about conservation and who knows he may have his opinions on raptors turned on its head.
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Old Thursday 26th February 2004, 19:54   #11
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Thomas Reid

Who are you trying to kid.

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Old Thursday 26th February 2004, 19:59   #12
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so howabout a spell doing some work for raptors or RSPB in addition to the sentence then.....

we need to change minds....locking up people has a history of not changing opinions but entrenching them
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Old Thursday 26th February 2004, 20:00   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Allwood
so howabout a spell doing some work for raptors or RSPB in addition to the sentence then.....

we need to change minds....locking up people has a history of not changing opinions but entrenching them
and Mark R.... I gather we have a birding pal in Common...Chris Mills? I used to twitch with him back in the day.
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Old Thursday 26th February 2004, 20:37   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Allwood
and Mark R.... I gather we have a birding pal in Common...Chris Mills? I used to twitch with him back in the day.
Is that the chap who used to bird Attenborough and now lives in Norfolk? I used to bump into him in the late eighties/nineties at a well known HB site in Notts, give him my regards.

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Old Thursday 26th February 2004, 21:19   #15
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I thought hanging was a suspended sentence.
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Old Sunday 29th February 2004, 01:26   #16
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i was almost on the side of the righteous, until jayhunters unbelievably stupid and naive comments in grouping the death of a child with the death of a bird. Tim mentioned being grouped as trainspottery, i'd say he was being unfair to trainspotters if thats your attitude

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Old Sunday 29th February 2004, 01:35   #17
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Strange comment,mamo;exactly which side is that of the "righteous"?
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Old Sunday 29th February 2004, 09:38   #18
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There was an article in Saturday's Times regarding many examples of raptor persecution in recent years.

They suggested that this was mainly to protect the interest of those involved in the 'game bird' business, and made the very valid point that, since there are so many more people interested in bird conservation as compared to game shooting, that the hunting brigade better beware of a public backlash and calls for an outright ban of all game shooting.

They also said that many more people make their living from wildlife conservation and tourism these days than do from game shooting, which (if true) at least gives a bit of encouragement for the future.
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Old Sunday 29th February 2004, 17:54   #19
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I think most of you have missed the point here - the guy who gets prosecuted is the Game-keeper - and quite right too but he is almost certainly acting on behalf of the land-owner.

In these cases the fines are probably paid by the (wealthy) land-owner and are a trifle in comparison with the money brought in by the "shooting" brigade.

I think that the time has come for the land-owner to be brought to book as well. The possibility of custodial sentences for land-owners would soon have them discouraging their game-keepers?

Look at last years fires on the moors in the Forest of Bowland which wiped out Harrier nests - an accident? I think not.
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Old Sunday 29th February 2004, 22:02   #20
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the righteous, Grousemore, are the majority of sane people, who whilst agreeing custodial sentences for this kind of offence are justified, to group it with the murder of a child is just plain irresponsible and gives weight to the argument that birders, twitchers or whatever are a bunch of green bearded fruitcakes

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Old Sunday 29th February 2004, 22:32   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamo
to group it with the murder of a child is just plain irresponsible
mamo
I don't think that the crimes were meant to be compared but the leniency of the sentences.

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Old Monday 1st March 2004, 07:04   #22
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Thanks Andy it was the strange whims of Judges in their sentencing, I was referring to.
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Old Monday 1st March 2004, 14:06   #23
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The man is a complete T**
These judges haven't a clue about wildlife.
It should be a panel off people who know how inportant
these birds are that should sentence these morons.
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Old Monday 1st March 2004, 15:45   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Taylor
These judges haven't a clue about wildlife.
Sadly some of them seem to have little clue about crime & proper sentencing either.

Though IMO I don't think it'd do any good to clog up the already overcrowded prison space with the likes of this gamekeeper, if it was his first offence.
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Old Monday 1st March 2004, 20:46   #25
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I think most people miss the point when it comes to the so called sentencing by the judges, quite a lot of the judges and magistrates are the very same landowners who own the shoots that the gamekeepers are keeping!

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