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'Depraved' animal rights extremist caught with hoard of graphic child pornography videos

Criminal records amongst animal rights activists is something the public have largely come to expect.

Luke Steele, the leader of a group of Moorland Monitors, who seems to campaign against driven grouse shooting on a full-time basis is well known for spending 18-months in prison after being part of the team that harassed staff at Huntingdon Laboratories, which included writing letters to their neighbours and families accusing them of being paedophiles.

Then there is Sarah Whitehead, another anti-grouse shooting extremist with links to Luke Steele who, despite already serving a six-year sentence for harassment, has recently been convicted again of hurling abuse and threats through a megaphone, calling members of the public 'paedophiles', 'wankers' and 'retards' and threatening to 'blow up' a dog racing track.

Each week there are examples of criminal vandalism taking place across our uplands with activists demolishing property and harrassing gamekeepers and other moorland workers.

So much so that nearly two-thirds of gamekeepers reported experiencing abuse and/or threats from activists and 32% had received some form of physical abuse.

However few activists' crimes are quite so grim and unpleasant as the recent case of Scottish animal rights campaigner, Neil Hansen, 54.

According to yesterday's Edinburgh Evening News Hansen was caught with a horrific collection of movies depicting children being raped in his flat in Edinburgh.

His previous crimes included alleged property damage and conspiracy to send a hoax bomb to public relations officer.

Yet despite the depravity and extremism of some of the crimes carried out by animal rights activists it is strange how willing the main charitable conservation organisations are to be associated with them.

Mark Avery, the RSPB's former Conservation Director and longstanding grouse shooting critic, and Jeff Knott, the RSPB's Operations Director for Central and Eastern England, are pictured here standing proudly with renowned criminal, Luke Steele, in Westminster.

Furthermore, the RSPB's Public Affairs Director, Adam Barnett is quite happy to share social media posts from the likes of Luke Steele.

It raises serious questions over why these publicly funded organisations, who are meant to be focused only on enhancing conservation practices, are happy to be associated with such extreme activists, or indeed whether they have themselves been captured.

The consequences of charities and other publicly funded organisations associating themselves with extremism was made clear a few years ago with the RSPCA when intervention was required in order to enable that charity to change their ways to stop being an extremist group.

This was highlighted when Jane Tredgett, its Vice-Chair, was forced to quit in 2019 after being found to be part of the extremist movement, Animal Rebellion, and calling on protestors to shut down Britain's top meat market.

Unfortunately however it seems like the lessons of the RSPCA have not yet been heeded.


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