TWO men who were caught on camera walking across farmland with dogs have been fined.

James Baines and Andrew Paterson, both of Haughton Road, Darlington, admitted daytime poaching on land at Newton Morrell, near Barton, at Northallerton Magistrates’ Court.

The court heard that Baines, 34, and Paterson, 30, were spotted walking in line with each other across field with two lurcher dogs on Saturday, December 28.

A hare was seen to run from their direction.

A witness recorded the pair on a digital camera which showed their co-ordinated efforts while trespassing on private land.

Police were contacted and officers stopped their car leaving a gated field entrance.

Baines said they had stopped to top up the water in the car, while Paterson claimed that they had pulled over so he could relieve himself.

Three landowners stated the men did not have permission to be on their land.

Baines was fined £230 and Paterson was fined £215.

Wildlife Crime Officer PC John Wilbor, of Richmond Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “We have a number of very effective and dedicated volunteer watch schemes who help out with night time patrols and I can assure anyone else who intends to come to Richmondshire to prey on our communities that there is a very good chance that someone will be watching them.”