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(Updated 30/8/01)

Hunt Beagle thief is sentenced

An animal rights activist who was caught with a Beagle stolen from a hunt's kennels by other animal extremists and then mutilated was sentenced to 60 hours community service.

Julian Greensides claimed he had taken no part in the burglary at the kennels of Wye Beagles and had only found one of the dogs wandering around near his home, over 100 miles from where the dog was stolen.

Greensides, 35, who is still unemployed, but has a keen interest in the animal liberation movement appeared before Maidstone Crown Court charged with theft and handling. Greensides pleaded guilty to theft but denying the handling charge, he claimed he had not been involved in the original burglary and had found the dog wandering around and had adopted him as a stray without telling the police.

As there was no evidence to link him to the kennel raid, and the Crown had no option but to accept his plea. He was ordered to complete 60 hours community service and pay 200 costs.