Animal rights charity claims foxhunters riding quad bikes 'seriously assaulted staff'

One man allegedly sustained blows to the head causing severe bleeding 

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The Independent Online

An animal welfare charity has said its staff were “seriously assaulted and robbed of their cameras” while monitoring a foxhunt.

The League Against Cruel Sports claims two of their employees were attacked by a “gang of hunt followers”, some riding quad bikes and wearing masks, at Leicestershire’s Belvoir Hunt on Saturday.

Darryl Cunnington sustained neck and leg injuries and his colleague Roger Swaine suffered from severe bleeding after sustaining blows to the head, according to the BBC.

Police confirmed they were called to property by Toft's Lane, Stathern, at about 15:50 GMT and that two men had been arrested on suspicion of assault.

Leicestershire police have begun an investigation immediately and dispatched a helicopter in search of the group of men who fled the scene.

Eduardo Gonçalves, Chief Executive for League Against Cruel Sports, said in a statement: “Our number one priority is the wellbeing of our injured staff and I am on my way to visit them now.

“We are all shocked by the violence of the Belvoir Hunt followers and this barbaric thuggery must not go unpunished. Our courageous investigators play a critical role in peacefully monitoring and enforcing the anti-hunting law that some people consider themselves to be above.

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“Clearly some hunt followers are not satisfied with violence against our wildlife. They now satisfy their bloodlust by attacking people."

A Leicestershire Police spokesman said inquiries were ongoing to work out the exact circumstances surrounding the incident.

The organisers of the Belvoir Hunt could not be reached for comment.