Man charged with encouraging others to break hunting law after ITV News investigation

Fox hunting has been illegal in the UK since 2004

A man has been charged with intentionally encouraging or assisting others to commit an offence under the Hunting Act.

It comes after an ITV News investigation into trail hunting webinars.

The Hunting Act 2004 was the law that made fox hunting illegal in the UK.

Mark Hankinson, 60, of Sherborne in Dorset, is due before magistrates on 4 March.

The police began investigating the contents of the webinars held on 11 and 13 August after ITV News brought it to their attention.

Devon and Cornwall Police asked the public to not speculate about the case on social media as discussion of a live case could break some court laws.

A spokesperson from the Hunting Office said: “The Hunting Office is very disappointed at the decision of the CPS and does not believe that it is justified by the evidence. "Hunts operate legally within the confines of the Hunting Act as has been evidenced by hundreds of thousands of days of legal hunting since it came into force. "The notion that anybody is encouraging them to do otherwise is entirely unsustainable and we look forward to those who have been charged being cleared of any wrongdoing.”