Page last updated at 17:23 GMT, Thursday, 11 March 2010

Warwickshire gyrocopter pilot 'feared danger'

Bryan Griffiths - archive image
Bryan Griffiths denies manslaughter by gross negligence

An animal rights supporter accused of killing a hunt supporter in a gyrocopter felt "there was imminent danger" to himself, a court heard.

Bryan Griffiths, 55, from Bedworth, Warwickshire, said Trevor Morse was speaking on a mobile and he feared severe injury "if others turned up".

Mr Griffiths, of Wiltshire Close, denies the manslaughter by gross negligence of Mr Morse in March 2009.

He had been monitoring the Warwickshire Hunt, of which Mr Morse was a member.

Mr Morse died at Long Marston Airfield, Stratford-upon-Avon.

'Extremely agitated'

Mr Griffiths told Birmingham Crown Court that Mr Morse was in a Land Rover which Mr Morse moved to partly block the gyrocopter.

He said that he "politely asked" Mr Morse to move out of the way.

Asked what Mr Morse's response was, Mr Griffiths said Mr Morse replied "'you are going nowhere'".

Mr Griffiths said: "I was extremely agitated. I wanted to get away as quickly as possible, because I felt there was imminent danger to myself, my passenger and my aircraft.

"I desperately felt that we had to get away from there and this man [Trevor Morse] was clearly trying to stop us.

"I had no doubt in my mind that if others turned up, we would suffer severe injury."

Mr Morse was a committee member with the Warwickshire Hunt.

The case continues.

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