#TheList Dominic O’Connor (DoB 18/10/1989) previously known as William Mocsari and also William Stevens, previously of Roden Street, Kircubbin, Co Down – convicted of cooking and killing a dog
O’Connor strangled his four-year-old collie, Jess, with a lead before cooking her, using “a few onions and an Oxo cube” in December 2016. He then fed the stew to his other dog. He put Jess’s remains on the fire and later dumped the ashes into Portavogie harbour.
O’Connor was found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to a dog and banned for life from owning another animal.
Prior to being sent to prison for two years in November 2017 O’Connor was seen at a property in Dundela Avenue, Belast BT4 3BT. His family are based in Bangor, Co Down and he also has links to Hammersmith in London and Surrey.
The court heard that O’Connor bought Jess on the internet classifieds site Gumtree.
The incident was uncovered when he told hospital health professionals what he had done.
Police then visited his house, where they found burned dog hair and a liquid on the grate of the fire.
Sentencing O’Connor, the judge said this was a “particularly disgraceful and heinous offence”.
He said O’Connor had misled the people from whom he got the dog, leading them to believe she would be nurtured and protected.
Instead, he said that it was clear that O’Connor was going to kill this dog and “inflict serious cruelty”.
He said O’Connor’s behaviour was “barbaric and calculated”.
The judge added that O’Connor had raised questions about his mental health, but did not provide any medical evidence on which the court could rely.
He said he had displayed “no real remorse” and despite not giving evidence on his own behalf, O’Connor seemed to challenge the evidence against him.
The court heard that O’Connor had 23 previous convictions.
Sentence: He was sentenced to two years in prison and a further two on licence. He was banned from owning any animal for life.
#TheList Peter Neville Tellett, born 22/11/1959, of 8 East Green, Sealand Deeside, Flintshire CH5 2SG – neglected Jack Russell terrier SpongeBob and failed to take him to the vet even when he chewed off his own back foot and lower leg
Tellett admitted a cruelty charge between July 4 and July 18, 2017.
Solicitor Glen Murphy, prosecuting for the RSPCA, told Flintshire Magistrates Court that RSPCA Inspector Fred Armstrong called at the Tellett’s home and spoke to his partner, Angela Maguire.
Inspector Armstrong was shown a male Jack Russell dog and part of his rear right leg was missing.
The injury appeared to be fairly recent but Maguire said she did not know how it happened.
It had been noticed some two weeks earlier but she said they did not have the money to take him to the vet.
She agreed to sign over the dog, together with two others, to the RSPCA.
At the time there were three adult dogs and five puppies in the property.
Tellett was interviewed and said he had SpongeBob for nine years and became aware of the injury some two weeks before. It was not bleeding and he assumed it was alright.
Tellett said he believed the dog had done it himself, did not howl or cry, and he did not consider it to be in pain.
He agreed it was his fault that nothing had been done about it. “I should have done more,” he said.
Vet David Harlow found the dog to be “quiet and miserable” and was missing his rear, right lower leg below the hock.
The wound was swollen and painful, the vet suspected it was infected, and the degree of healing was consistent with “traumatic amputation” some two weeks before.
It was also consistent with the claim that the dog might have chewed off his own foot.
SpongeBob was given pain relief and antibiotics.
He also had teeth missing and may have had teeth knocked out, said the vet.
His nails on the remaining three feet were long, suggesting a lack of reasonable exercise.
The leg injury would have extremely painful and the vet said that the dog would have been in chronic and acute pain since it happened.
He had undergone unnecessary suffering by failure to seek veterinary attention.
Mr Murphy said a lack of money was no reason not to seek veterinary attention for an animal.
All vets were under a duty to provide pain relief to prevent suffering, whether payment was made or not. The RSPCA was always available to give advice.
District judge Gwyn Jones told Tellett he would have to make urgent arrangements to have any remaining dogs rehoused.
Earlier the judge questioned why, if there was no money available, there were five dogs in the house in the first place.
The court was told Tellett, who had no previous convictions, could not do unpaid work because of a heart condition.
Sentence: 12-week tagged curfew; £300 costs and £85 surcharge; 10-year ban on keeping dogs (expires November 2027).
#TheList Daniel Jackman, born c. 1975, and Charlene Reed, born 27/08/1981, both of 123 Queens Road, Gosport PO12 1LG – locked their starving flea-infested dog in a filthy bathroom with no food or clean water
Charlene ‘Charlie’ Reed and partner Danny Jackman were convicted in their absence of two charges of causing unnecessary suffering to Staffordshire bull terrier Mitsy and two charges of failing in a duty to ensure her welfare.
RSPCA inspectors, who visited the couple’s home on February 16, 2017, were met with piles of faeces on the bathroom floor while Mitsy had been left with a bowl of stale water and an empty food bowl.
The dog had extensive fur loss and was very thin with her ribs prominent through her skin. She also had multiple sores which she was scratching.
The RSPCA contacted and visited Jackman and Reed a total of 16 times, but after their advice was repeatedly ignored, had no choice but to call police and seize her from the couple.
RSPCA Inspector Jen Ride said: “Mitsy was in a terrible state when she was rescued.
“She had been left without food or clean water in a dirty bathroom. She was very underweight with all her ribs showing.
“The neglect suffered by Mitsy could have been easily avoided but she was simply left to suffer without the care she needed and deserved.”
Sentencing: Jackman – 18-month community order, 100 hours of unpaid work, 25 rehabilitation activity requirement days, ordered to pay a total of £335.
Reed – 18-month disqualification from keeping dogs, a 12-month community order; two-month curfew; 15 days of rehabilitation activity requirement days; ordered to pay a total of £210.
Both were banned from keeping dogs for 18 months (expired May 2019).
#TheList Sarah Taylor, born c. 1979, of Cookson Close, Burnham-on-Sea TA8 – banned from keeping dogs after her springer spaniel was found underweight and covered in raw itchy scabs
Sarah Taylor admitted causing unnecessary suffering to her springer spaniel Cookie while living at an address in Nightingale Way in Weston-super-Mare.
An investigation was launched by the RSPCA after the animal welfare charity was contacted by a concerned member of the public who had seen the dog, Cookie, covered in raw itchy scabs.
RSPCA inspector Miranda Albinson said: “Those who own animals have a responsibility to care for them and ensure health conditions are dealt with promptly by a vet to avoid their pets suffering. There is never an excuse for ignoring an animal in need.”
The RSPCA says Cookie has now been rehomed.
Sentencing: fined £380. Banned from keeping dogs for five years (can be appealed after three years).
#TheList puppy trader Jaimie Rose Colquhoun, born 21/02/1991, of Roseberry Street, Dundee DD2 2NS – sold animals trafficked from illegal breeders before selling them on Gumtree
Jaimie Colquhoun was found guilty of importing dogs from puppy farms in Ireland and selling them online to unsuspecting animal lovers.
The mother-of-three was snared as part of a major multi-agency operation, known as Operation Delphin, which is aimed at combating puppy farming.
She was accused of repeatedly offering animals for sale through trading site Gumtree and meeting buyers in public car parks to carry out sales without a licence.
Colquhoun told investigators that a contact in Ireland she said she only knew as Thomas would text her once a month to tell her what breeds he had available and she would travel as a foot passenger by ferry to the Republic of Ireland to collect a litter.
She would then list them on Gumtree and carry out the transactions in car parks or at her Dundee home.
Breeds sold by Colquhoun included English Bulldogs, Morkies – a cross between a Yorkshire Terrier and a Maltese – and Pugs.
She said she did not have papers for any of the animals nor did she have them checked by vets prior to sale – aside from one which had an eye problem.
The court heard Colquhoun was first interviewed by the Scottish SPCA under caution in August 2015 and told she was suspected of a crime.
But the brazen trader went on to sell more dogs through Gumtree in October that year.
When confronted about that she whined: “I needed money for my rent.”
The trial was told that some of the animals had even been transported from Hungary via a middle man in Hertfordshire.
Colquhoun’s defence lawyer, Ian Houston of Bruce Short solicitors, claimed Scottish SPCA investigators told his client she would be branded “Cruella de Vil” and have dog excrement put through her door by animal lovers if she didn’t help their probe. This was emphatically denied by the animal charity.
Colquhoun pleaded not guilty to three charges on summary complaint of selling animals without a licence so to do.
But she was convicted of carrying on a business of selling animals at Pleasure Land in Arbroath and in the car park of Morrisons, Dundee, as well as “keeping a pet shop without a licence” at her home in Dundee between January 1 2014 and July 13 2015.
Sheriff Gregor Murray imposed a community payback order with 250 hours of unpaid work and said the maximum jail term he could impose — three months — would not be enough punishment.
But he could not impose an order banning her from keeping animals because legislation that would allow him to do so is not yet in force.
He said: “You became involved in selling dogs in an unregulated fashion purely to make money.
This forms part of a trade which, if not regulated, can cause cruelty to animals. Conduct such as yours encourages others to breed and supply such animals.”
A spokesman for the Scottish SPCA said: “Whilst we’re disappointed that she did not receive a ban we do welcome the fact that she has been dealt with by the court.
“We currently feel sentencing for animal abuse is very inconsistent in Scotland and we would like to see an increase in the maximum jail sentence which would provide the sheriff with a greater range of options.”
Sentencing: community payback order of 250 hours of unpaid work. No ban.
In May 2019 Colquhoun was convicted in the Welsh courts on four charges of contravening the Welfare of Animals (Transport) Order.
In January 2017 Colquhoun was stopped by police at Holyhead Port after she came off a ferry from Ireland. She was found to have seven Pomeranian puppies in a large bag but when asked for the appropriate documents she told officials she didn’t have any.
She was found guilty after she failed to turn up at Caernarfon Magistrates Court for a video link hearing from Forfar Sheriff Court in Scotland.
Magistrates decided to proceed in her absence after being told it was the seventh time the matter had been listed and she had failed to turn up on previous occasions.
Julia Longworth, prosecuting on behalf of Anglesey Council, said Colquhoun was stopped after police saw her carrying a large bag which appeared to be moving.
“She was asked what was in the bag and she said it was her dog”.
Asked to show the dog she produced a dog carrier and a plastic bag. She then said there were four dogs but further examination found seven dogs in the two containers. There were four in the plastic bag and a further three in the dog carrier,” she said.
Ms Longworth said the Pomeranian puppies were in good condition but were “crammed in” and had no water.
“Asked for the dogs’ documentation she said “do they need any”,” she added.
Colquhoun told officers she had collected the animals from a man in County Meath for £1,500 and intended to give them to members of her family.
The pups were given water and Colquhoun was allowed to continue her journey.
Ms Longworth said anyone carrying more than five dogs needs to be authorised to do so under animal welfare regulations.
The court heard a week previously Colquhoun had been spoken to by officers at Holyhead port when she was found to be carrying four Pomeranian puppies from Ireland. Authorisation was not required on that occasion.
Finding her guilty of the charges the magistrate said: “Legislation is in place to protect animal welfare. The defendant breached the regulations knowingly and the penalty reflects that.”
Colquhoun was fined £1,000 on each charge and ordered to pay £889 in costs.
#TheList Danielle Elizabeth Brown (also known as Danielle Davidson), born 08/04/1986, of 32 Dunlop Street, Linwood, Paisley PA3 3AL – starved pet dogs Shasta and Skylar and refused to take them to the vet.
Brown’s cruelty left seven-year-old Shasta in such a “terrible state” that a concerned vet felt there was no option but to put the animal to sleep.
The dogs were taken to the vet by investigators from the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SSPCA) following an anonymous tip-off that they were being neglected.
Investigators arrived at Brown’s home and took the animals away to have them examined.
Shasta’s ribs, hips and spine could clearly be seen through his coat. He also had a fever and tests revealed he had become blind in one eye due to glaucoma.
Vets who examined two-year-old Skylar could also clearly see her ribs, hips and spine.
Single mother Brown pleaded guilty to neglecting both pets between February 27 and March 27, 2017, in breach of the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006.
Sentencing: Community Payback Order of 75 hours of unpaid work over the next three months. Banned from owning animals for just 5 years (expires November 2022). Deprivation order on the surviving dog, Skylar.
#TheList tyre fitters Shaun Mark Fussell, born 05/02/1988, of Woodlands Crescent, Quakers Yark, Treharris CF46 5AP, Lee Edward Jones, born 27/07/1975, of Rhydfach, Pentrebach, Merthyr Tydfil CF48 4DJ and William Christopher Morgan, born 02/03/1981, of Upper Fforest Level, Mountain Ash CF45 4HR – hit a wild rat over the head, forced it into a pipe and launched it into the air like a cannonball.
Shaun Fussell, Lee ‘Sooty’ Jones and William ‘Billy’ Morgan were all convicted of animal cruelty after a video was posted to Facebook showing a live rat being fired out of a makeshift cannon.
The horrific footage showed a rat being caught in a tyre fitting shop using pliers, and forced into a pipe attached to an air compressor after being hit on the head with a metal pole. The rat was then shot out of the pipe by Lee Jones using the compressor, into the air and over a neighbouring building.
After issuing a public appeal for information earlier in 2017, the RSPCA received “scores” of calls from people as far as Australia to help track down the men.
RSPCA inspector Gemma Cooper said: “This was such a horrific case where this rat suffered unnecessarily.
“Even though some people see rats as vermin they are still protected by law in certain circumstances. They are still living creatures that feel fear and pain.
“These men purposely attached a gas compressor and put the rat in a tube and fired it. They knew exactly what they were doing.
“We never found the rat, but it surely suffered extremely from the horrifying incident.”
Sentencing: all three men were given a 12-month community order of 180 hours of unpaid work each. They were each ordered to pay a total of £445 in costs and charges.
#TheList licensed commercial dog breeder and seller Morag Jackson, born c. 1962, of Mid Lanrigg, Stonehouse, Larkhall ML9 3PD – convicted of keeping dozens of terrier dogs in cramped pens and failing to properly feed or clean them
Jackson, who is originally from Turriff, Aberdeenshire and has a past conviction for running an ILLEGAL dog breeding operation, was found guilty of four offences under the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006 between July and September 2015.
Following a call from a concerned member of the public about the conditions of the puppies being kept at Jackson’s premises at West Town Farm, Stonehouse, inspectors from the Scottish SPCA attended and found a number of dogs housed in pens between two wooden sheds and a garage. The conditions were cramped, dirty and unhygienic. There was little bedding and a a lack of food and water. Water that was present appeared discoloured and littered with debris.
The only food which the Scottish SPCA saw during their search was a mouldy tub of food teeming with maggots which had been left out for a Yorkshire Terrier and her newborn pups.
During a search of the garage area, a West Highland Terrier type bitch named Abbey was found in a small pink carrier on a shelf.
The carrier was covered with cloth, the carrier had no bedding, food or water and was too small for the dog to even turn around. There was very little light entering the box due to the cloth and rubbish surrounding it. Abbey was underweight with a severe skin disease and almost total hair loss.
A total of 36 dogs were removed from the premises and taken into the care of Scottish SPCA centres across the country.
Most made a full recovery but some required ongoing treatment.
Gary Aitken, Procurator Fiscal, Wildlife and Environment described the case as “one of the worst cases of gross, widespread and indiscriminate neglect which the Crown has dealt with in recent times”.
Mr Aitken added: “These dogs were caused terrible and unnecessary suffering and Jackson failed to provide them with a suitable environment.
“We expect the highest standards of commercial dog breeders and are committed to working with the Scottish SPCA and the police to ensure that those who do not meet these standards are held to account.”
Sentencing: 200 hours of unpaid work, banned from keeping dogs for 15 years; forfeiture of the dogs in her care (expires August 2041).
In January 2017 police and Scottish SPCA went to Jackson’s home to investigate reports that she was breaching her ban on keeping animals. Although Jackson attempted to obstruct their search and even kicked a police officer in the chest, four dogs were recovered and taken into the care of the SSPCA.
For this latest offence she was sentenced to 200 hours of unpaid work.