Freepost Mail Scam
The League Against Cruel Sports today revealed that they had so far received a vanload of mail as a result of a Freepost ‘scam’ perpetrated by the pro-hunting lobby. Hunt supporters have sent a variety of items including bricks, excrement, heavy books and abusive letters – one involving bestiality – to the League after an email, citing the support of the Countryside Alliance (CA), was circulated urging them to do so using the League’s Freepost address. The address was published in the Evening Standard’s ‘Londoner’s Diary’ and Jeremy Clarkson’s column in the Sun on Saturday 17th December. Clarkson suggested that he was going to send a paving stone or a horse. The CA has since made an effort to distance itself from the scam.
Investigations by the League have revealed potential evidence of named individuals’ involvement in the circulation of the email, including major figures in the Countryside Alliance, the Masters of Fox Hounds Association, hunts and the wider pro-hunting movement. There are indications that the email has also been forwarded by the wife of an employee of the Royal Household at Buckingham Palace. Several City law firms are also implicated, along with estate agencies, chartered surveyors and senior staff in a variety of companies.
The League has reported the matter to the CID. The police are investigating potential abuse of the postal system and malicious communications.
Emails from all over the country are being forwarded to the League by its supporters and sympathisers. Many have been forwarded to the League by those with no views on the hunting debate, who are disgusted by the hunters’ attempts to hijack donations sent through the Freepost system. Many of the emails would appear to contain the identities of the senders, enabling the League to pass names, email addresses, postal addresses and details of workplaces to the police. The police have the power to access the computers and servers of individuals, companies and organisations if they suspect a crime has been committed.
Mike Hobday, Head of Public Affairs at the League Against Cruel Sports, said:
“Not content with abusing our wildlife for their own entertainment, they are now trying to deprive us of funds donated by people who want us to protect that same wildlife. Many of our supporters are pensioners, who use the Freepost system to send us donations.
“This attempt at trying to frustrate our work in bringing suspected illegal hunting to the attention of the police simply will not work. We and our Hunt Crimewatch volunteers will still be there watching and reporting suspected illegal hunting acts to the police. This latest action just reinforces the contempt in which we know the hunters hold the law. We have passed this material to the authorities, and are confident that there is enough evidence to land many pro-hunters in hot water.”