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U.K. anti-hunting group get private drone

March 21, 2013 at 7:27 PM

LONDON, March 21 (UPI) -- A British anti-hunting group says it's hired a private "ethical" surveillance drone to gather evidence of whether the country's fox-hunting ban is being obeyed.

The League Against Cruel Sports says it has obtained the drone from ShadowView, a non-profit organization based in Britain and the Netherlands offering a variety of drones and expert drone pilots for hire, NewScientist.com reported Thursday.

ShadowView drones are available to "any individual, organization or government that meets our ethical standards and whose mission is one we feel fits with our own organizational objectives," organization co-founder Laurens de Groot said.

De Groot, who took part in South Atlantic anti-whaling and African anti-poaching campaigns, founded ShadowView with Steve Roest, a former head of the Sea Shepherd direct action group and James Phipps, a drone expert.

The League Against Cruel Sports announcement brought a response from The Countryside Alliance, which supports legal hunts.

"We think this is a PR stunt and the chances of the sort of drones being discussed ever providing evidence to support a prosecution against a hunt is very low, " Tim Bonner, the alliance's director of campaigns, said.

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