An animal rights activist from Brighton has been arrested while trying to protect dolphins. 

Jessie Treverton, 47, was arrested yesterday off the Faroe Islands, according to animal rights group Sea Shepherd. 

The group said she was one of three of its volunteers arrested by Danish authorities after ushering a group of white-sided dolphins away from the islands to stop them being hunted. 

All three have been charged with harassing the dolphins and failing to report a sighting to the huntmaster, according to the group, and appeared in court today in the Faroese capital, Torshavn. 

Sea Shepherd founder Captain Paul Watson said:  “Apparently in the Faroe Islands it is perfectly legal to kill a protected species, but it is illegal to push them back out to sea in order to keep them from harm’s way because that is considered ‘harassment.’

"So these three Sea Shepherd women can proudly say that they successfully ‘harassed’ the dolphins for the purpose of saving their lives.”

The group has been working in the islands, about 200 miles northwest of Scotland and an autonomous territory within the kingdom of Denmark, to try and stop the regular slaughter of pilot whales and other types of dolphin.

Known locally as “grindagrap,” the slaughter is reportedly defended by locals as part of their culture.

Sea Shepherd said Ms Treverton was captaining its 8.5metre boat Spitfire when she was arrested alongside crewmembers Celine Le Diouron and Marion Selighini, both from France. 

The Faroese authorities could not immediately be reached for comment.