Did animal rights activists beat dog to death and leave its body on hunt master's drive
Lee Peters was fined last year for racially abusing an anti-hunt protester Corpse dumped near a vandalised car with symbol from animal rights group
11:29 GMT, 24 March 2013
22:00 GMT, 24 March 2013
The dog was found dead on the driveway of Ross Harriers hunt master Lee Peters, pictured last year
A huntmaster's dog was battered to death and dumped on his driveway in what may have been an attack by animal rights activists.
Lee Peters, who was last year fined for racially abusing an anti-hunt protester, is said to be mortified after finding his pet.
The corpse had been dumped near a vandalised car inscribed with a symbol for an animal rights group.
While it would appear surprising for the activists to have killed a dog, police are said to be taking the accusations ‘very seriously’.
The gruesome discovery was made at the base of the Ross Harriers hunt at Coughton, a hamlet on the Herefordshire-Gloucestershire border close to an area designated for the upcoming badger cull.
Members of the hunt are said to have become concerned about tactics used by protesters in the area in the run-up to the cull.
It is thought the dog, which is not used for hunts, was killed at a nearby kennel before being left on Mr Peters’s drive.
Cars nearby had been inscribed by vandals with what appears to be a symbol for the Animal Liberation Front.
A source close to the hunt said: ‘This was not a very pleasant incident at all. The letters ALF were scratched into the vehicles there and the dog was dead on the drive.
‘The police are taking it extremely seriously. These are the same sorts of people threatening all sorts with the badger cull in this area.
‘The police are looking seriously at the activities of the animal rights activists. A lot of people are worried.’
Mr Peters, a married father-of-one, was fined almost 3,000 by magistrates in November after being found guilty of racially abusing black protester Hiba Hassan during a confrontation in the village of Aston Crews last January.
'He had initially called police to disperse the protesters but was himself arrested when they told officers that while on horseback he banged on the window of a 4×4 and when he spotted Miss Hassan, shouted: “look there’s a f****** w** in there”.’
Mortified: Master Lee Peters at Ross Harriers Boxing Day Hunt meeting at the Royal Hotel, Ross-on-Wye
Mr Peters, 33, said: ‘There was a dog killed and left on my driveway. It obviously did not die of natural causes. I’ve got a young family. This is particularly worrying.’
A spokesman for the Hunt Saboteurs Association insisted the group had ‘nothing whatsoever’ to do with the attack.
West Mercia Police said it is investigating criminal damage to a car and the death of a dog at kennels near to Ross-on-Wye on March 19.
A spokesman added: ‘It is believed a dog belonging to the victim, which was on the property at the time, was killed during the incident.
‘It has not yet been established exactly how the animal died. Officers are awaiting a report from a vet.’