Threats to man jailed for badger baiting

A MAN convicted of badger baiting has been subjected to a series of threats and is believed to be a major target of animal rights activists.

Police are investigating after William Anderson, 26, from Pickering, claimed he was being harassed upon his release from prison after serving just one month of his 16-week jail sentence.

It is thought he has been blacklisted, along with other gang members who were convicted for the offence, on a string of websites run by animal rights groups.

Malton Police Sergeant Paul Stephenson, who had a pivotal role in bringing the gang to justice, said: “I know that Anderson and his family have been getting strange cars parked outside their house and have been getting things through the post. It’s more intimidation than anything else.

“I also understand that the men’s names have appeared on a target list on animal rights websites. They are not getting police protection and there is no protection planned, we are just looking into each incident that has been reported to us.”

He added: “It doesn’t matter what people have done, everybody deserves to have their individual case heard.

“We will deal with each one to the best of our ability. It is often not just the people who have appeared in court who are affected, but their families too.”

Anderson was jailed at the beginning of January, along with three other men, for a barbaric attack which saw badgers mauled to death by a pack of dogs.