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One Fugitive Pig Captured in London

January 16, 1998

LONDON (AP) _ The flight of one of a pair of pigs that escaped slaughter was over today, ended by capture by tabloid reporters, but its companion still roamed free _ eluding police, humane officers and a posse of reporters.

In a great escape that has captivated Britain, two 5-month-old Tamworth boars broke away from slaughterhouse workers last week in Malmesbury, 90 miles west of London. They squeezed under a fence and swam across a river.

Newspapers have enthusiastically taken up the story of the fugitives _ nicknamed Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Pig _ especially the tabloids Daily Mail and the Express,

Daily Mail reporter Barbara Davies said she and her team captured one pig Thursday morning, but the news only was released in today’s paper.

``One second she was free, then, with one slam, Butch was trapped _ squealing and flinging herself around the pen in an indignant display of pig ignorance,″ Davies wrote.

The Daily Mail also claimed a ``world oinkslusive″ interview with its captive.

The other pig was cornered Thursday night but sprinted away from four police constables and an officer from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

There is some confusion about the gender of the pigs.

Dave Lang, a local pig breeder, brought his Tamworth sow, Samantha, to the search area in hope of luring the fugitives.

``Pigs are hopelessly attracted to the opposite sex,″ the Daily Telegraph quoted him as saying.

``Sam is a fully grown pig. What young chap would be attracted to an older woman?″

Police said they were also being pestered by a clairvoyant, who has called several times claiming to know where the pigs are.

``We are a nation of animal lovers, but I’m surprised at the way this has snowballed,″ said Wiltshire police constable Roger Bull. ``It has certainly captured people’s imagination.″

Faced with offers of sanctuary from across the country, their owner agreed Thursday to spare the porkers if they are captured and sell them to someone who can give them a good home.

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