Man arrested over poaching

A MAN has been arrested on suspicion of poaching deer in Stannington.

At 2.25am on Saturday, January 28, police were on patrol in the area when they came across a 4x4 parked by the side of the road.

A police spokesman said officers stopped and spoke to the driver of the vehicle, who was standing to the rear.

When they checked further, the bodies of two young deer were found next to it having been gutted.

A 37-year-old Ashington man was arrested and the officers seized the vehicle and a firearm.

The man has been bailed pending further inquiries. A second man made off from police at the scene and enquiries are continuing to trace him.

Northumberland Wildlife Crime Officer Mick Leybourne said: “We take poaching very seriously and work with local gamekeepers and farmers to target illegal poachers.

“We run a number of operations across Northumberland where we pro-actively look for and target those involved in poaching and have them stopped.

“Poachers no longer seem content with lamping for rabbit and hare. Deer are now top of their list and they go to great lengths to kill them using firearms and dogs.”