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Pembrokeshire badger cull halted after appeal

13 July 2010 - BBC News

A controversial cull of around 1,500 badgers in south-west Wales has been halted after protesters won their legal challenge to stop it. The Badger Trust appealed against Welsh Assembly Government (WAG) plans for a trial cull to reduce TB within cattle. The Badger Trust had questioned the cull's effectiveness. Anti-cull protesters argued it had not yet been scientifically proven that badgers are implicated in the transmission of TB within cattle and it doubts a cull would help eradicate the disease.

Three judges announced the trust's appeal against a judicial review was successful and quashed the order.

Lord Justice Pill said the assembly government was wrong to make an order for the whole of Wales when it consulted on the basis of a Intensive Action Pilot Area (IAPA) which only supported a cull on evidence within the IAPA. He said if the order had been confined to the IAPA in north Pembrokeshire, he would have dismissed the appeal.

The WAG said it was "disappointed" with the Court of Appeal's judgement. Rural Affairs Minister Elin Jones (elin.jones@wales.gov.uk) said she would need to consider the judges' decision in detail before deciding on the next steps.

However, Badger Trust solicitor Gwendolyn Morgan said: "The WAG has indicated that they will accept today's decision and will not appeal to the Supreme Court."

Following the appeal decision, Jeff Hayden from the Badger Trust, said he was "relieved with the result. But I have to say there were no winners in the appeal court today. The disease is still there, animals are still being culled. There's a real risk now of some farmers taking the law into their own hands - both sides agree that really is the worst scenario."

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