#TheList Stephen David Adams, born c. 1957, of Frank Road, Ely, Cardiff CF5 4DJ – allowed his elderly dog to become so emaciated and ill she had to be euthanised to end her suffering
Stephen David Adams pleaded guilty to two Animal Welfare Act offences after allowing his pet dog, Skips, to get into the “worst, most unimaginable” condition ever seen by a RSPCA inspector in 13 years of service.
Adams had failed to respond to Skips’ weight loss and poor body condition, while untreated diabetes was creating further complications.
The heavily emaciated dog was suffering significant fur loss and skin disease. She was also unable to move properly, making eating and drinking almost impossible for her.
Sadly, her condition was so poor that an independent vet had no choice but to put her to sleep to prevent further suffering.
RSPCA Cymru investigated after receiving a call from someone who was concerned about how the dog was being treated.
Inspector Selina Griffiths told how she had been handed a blue holdall containing the stricken dog whom she said “was practically drawing her last breath” and was in “a disgusting state”.
Inspector Griffiths said: “This was an horrendous case to deal with, with the dog clearly facing unthinkable misery as a consequence of her condition.
She added: “In 13 years on the frontline as an RSPCA inspector, poor Skips was in the worst, most unimaginable condition I have witnessed while working on the frontline.
“Her owner should have visited the vets many, many months before to get poor Skips the help she needed. His failure to do so has caused her a prolonged period of suffering, and agony.”
She continued: “Owning an animal like Skips should be a privilege – but this poor, veteran dog had been allowed to decline so rapidly without the help any dog owner should be prepared to provide.”
A deprivation order was made for another dog belonging to Adams. That dog will now be rehomed.
Sentencing: total of £300 in fines, costs and charges. Banned from keeping animals for just three years.
#TheList George John Moffat, born c. 1998, and Kerry Russell, born c. 1976, of Main Street, Bainsford, Falkirk FK2 – failed to seek veterinary help for their chronically sick dog, who later had to be put to sleep
George Moffat and Kerry Russell admitted that between January 21 and January 26 2018 at Haugh Gardens, Falkirk they caused unnecessary suffering to their dog, Banjo, by failing to provide him with appropriate care and treatment and not seeking veterinary advice for a chronic skin laceration and swelling to his head.
Moffat and Russell further admitted failing to ensure the needs of two dogs and four cats were met by exposing them to spilt paint, urine, faeces, household debris and knives and failing to allow them to exhibit normal behaviour by confining them with no access to appropriate outside areas for urinating and defecating, all contrary to the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006.
Depute fiscal Katie Cunningham said a Scottish SPCA inspector visited the flat occupied by the pair on January 31 after being notified by the vet who treated the Staffordshire Bull Terrier that the wound was so bad the dog had to be euthanised on humane grounds.
During the visit a dog in the property was observed to urinate against a living room door which “didn’t seem to shock anyone in the house, giving the impression this was the norm”.
The inspector also observed “spilt paint, unknown stains on the carpet, rubbish littered in the hall and a smell of stale urine”.
First offender Moffat and Russell both claimed that Banjo had hurt his neck after “running into a bush outside”.
Ms Cunningham added: “They said they had called the vet straight away and had used one of their expensive towels to stop the bleeding but they had no answer as to why the dog was not taken to the vet that day.”
Their defence solicitors said money and transport issues were behind why the dog was not taken to the vet but both accepted “more should have been done”.
Sentencing: 135 hours of unpaid work each; both were banned from keeping animals for 10 years.
#TheList Tony Johal, born January 1981, and his mother, Kamaljit Kaur Johal, born c. 1949, both of 135 Woodland Road, Birmingham B21 0ET – for severe neglect of an English bull mastiff
Tony Johal and Kamaljit Kaur Johal admitted causing unnecessary suffering to a the dog, named Cyrus, who was found in a condition described by magistrates as ‘horrific’.
Animal welfare officers from Birmingham City Council visited the pair’s home on 20 July 2018 following a complaint regarding the welfare of a dog at the address. The complaint stated that the dog had scabs, blood and insects all over his body.
Officers found that the dog, named Cyrus, was being kept in a dirty wooden kennel with only bare earth to lie on. He was emaciated and suffering from a severe, widespread skin infection, with open sores and cracked skin which bled when he moved. He was also covered in flies.
The person in charge of Cyrus at the time was Kamaljit Kaur Johal who claimed there was nothing wrong with the dog other than he was old. Cyrus’s owner, who spoke to the officers on the phone, was identified as her son, Tony, who lived at the same address.
Cyrus was removed by officers and taken immediately for veterinary treatment, where he was found to be in such appalling condition that he was put to sleep on welfare grounds. The vet confirmed Cyrus had been caused unnecessary suffering.
Sentencing: Tony Johal was given an 18-week prison sentence, suspended for 2 years, and fined £615.
Kamaljit Kaur Johal was fined £404.
Both were banned from keeping animals for 10 years, with no right of appeal.
#TheList Andrew John Bayne, born 23/03/1972, of Stirling Street, Dunipace, Denny FK6 6QN – left his elderly pet dog to die in pain and dumped her body
Callous Andrew Bayne, who has also lived in Gillingham in Kent, failed to provide veterinary care for the ailing dog, a 10-year-old Staffy named Pepsi
Appearing at Falkirk Sheriff Court, Bayne pleaded guilty to failing to provide adequate care and treatment, and failing to provide vet advice or treatment to his dog, under section 19 of the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006 between June 3 and September 3 last year.
The case came to light following an investigation by the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SSPCA) after the discovery of Pepsi’s body in a remote area.
SSPCA inspector Louise Seddon, said: “In September 2018 I was called to a job regarding a dead dog discovered dumped in a box in a remote area in Stirling. Upon veterinary post-mortem examination, Pepsi, the dog, was discovered to have a large ulcerated tumour hanging from the abdomen that had multiple discharges.
“There was also a discharge from an opening over the right hock, as well as a vaginal discharge. Her claws were found to be excessively long on all four feet.
“She was also confirmed to have a uterine infection and septic arthritis of the right hind ankle joint, both of which would have caused pain and discomfort, particularly the arthritis as she was likely to be non-weight bearing on the hind limb.
“Histopathology confirmed the tumour was benign and could have been removed by a veterinary surgeon. The tumour was present for many months and was infected for at least one week, which would have caused pain and discomfort, but could have been infected for longer.
“Pepsi sadly passed away following a period of pain and suffering, which did not happen overnight and could have been treated had veterinary advice been sought.”
Inspector Seddon said: “We welcome the fact this case has been dealt with and the sentence handed down. We hope Bayne will give serious consideration about his suitability to care for other animals in the future.”
Sentencing: fined £500 and banned from keeping dogs for five years.
#TheList Sean Ward, born c. 1991, originally from Greenock and more recently of Dougliehill Terrace, Port Glasgow PA14 – kept fighting dogs for killing wildlife including badgers, deer and foxes
Violent career criminal and wildlife persecutor Sean Ward was jailed for seven months after Scottish SPCA investigators uncovered evidence of his appalling animal cruelty. This included text messages in which Ward described setting dogs on a fox as “some buzz” as well as a sick video showing a live deer being restrained by it hind legs as voices urged dogs to attack it.
Photographs of Ward smiling beside the dead animal later emerged.
Ward was caught after a dog walker spotted him out with an injured dog in Port Glasgow in April 2018.
The black and white Jack Russell terrier was limping, had cuts and blood on her limbs and chest as well as a severe injury to her face.
The dog walker filmed the injured dog and sent footage to the Scottish SPCA.
The court heard police officers and Scottish SPCA investigators carried out a series of raids at Ward’s home after receiving the video from the concerned dog walker.
On one occasion, they found a Patterdale Terrier with scars on her face.
The animal was taken to a Scottish SPCA facility where she was examined by a vet. He found that the injuries were consistent with face-to-face fighting with a badger.
The vet viewed the film taken of the Jack Russell. In his opinion, the dog’s injuries were also consistent with face-to-face fighting with a badger.
A mobile phone seized during a search of Ward’s home was examined and a number of images and video were found.
One of the photographs showed Ward with a dead deer, a white lurcher and a Jack Russell.
A video of three dogs savaging a deer was also found where people were heard urging the dogs to attack.
Sara Shaw, head of the Wildlife and Environmental Crime Unit at the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS), welcomed the sentence.
She said: “These dogs caused terrible and unnecessary suffering with numerous wounds and scars.
“COPFS will continue to work to ensure those who participate in this barbaric practice are prosecuted and would encourage anyone who may have information on dog fighting to contact the police or Scottish SPCA.”
Sentencing: Jailed for seven months. Banned from keeping animals for 20 years.
“On Tuesday 23rd April 2019 officers from #TEAM2 #ARV and #NHPT arrested a male on suspicion of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal and using threatening abusive words or behaviour likely to cause harassment ,alarm or distress.
“Officers were called to an address in Aylesbury where a male had stabbed a dog multiple times resulting in emergency surgery and treatment with a local vet. On arrest the male was abusive to attending officers and members of the public.
“Yesterday at High Wycombe Magistrates’ court he pleaded guilty to these offences and has been imprisoned for 12 weeks. As well as this he has also been given a ban for 5 years from owning any other dog.”
Police decided for reasons unknown not to release Walker’s name and the local press haven’t published it either. It’s a sad day when the monsters living in our communities are allowed to remain anonymous despite their despicable acts.
Sentencing: 12 weeks in jail. Five-year ban on owning a dog.
#TheList poacher Arron Crighton, born c. 1997, of Kismet Street, Sunderland SR5 2LG – made shocking videos of his dogs brutally killing foxes; posted graphic photos and videos online showing horrific injuries suffered by both dogs and foxes
Arron Crighton admitted offences under the 2001 Animal Welfare Act and 2004 Hunting Act after using his black whippet, Jet, to attack and kill foxes.
Police were alerted to a number of videos made by Crighton, which included footage of a dog fighting with a fox and a person appearing to hold the fox down with their foot.
A second video showed two dogs with their jaws locked around the fox’s neck and body, while a picture was also taken showing Crighton and others holding a dog which had a bloodied fox in his mouth.
After being made aware of the social media posts, police executed a warrant at an address on Kismet Street, Sunderland, and seized a mobile phone belonging to Crighton.
Investigators discovered hundreds of shocking photos and videos showing the attacks and subsequent injuries of the animals saved on the phone.
Asked why he’d initiated the illegal activity in interview, Crighton responded “for sport”. He also claimed that if one dog was injured by the fox, he would “put another dog on”.
PC Peter Baker, of Northumbria Police, said: “The photographs and videos that Arron Crighton made are incredibly distressing and showed a total disregard for the welfare of these animals.
“Crighton took a great deal of satisfaction out of filming this barbaric and criminal activity and then posted the trophy pictures online.
“It is blatantly clear that he cannot be trusted to own an animal and ensure it is adequately protected from pain, suffering, injury and disease. On this occasion, both Crighton’s own dog and the foxes suffered horrific injuries.
“This investigation was launched following information provided to police by a member of the public who saw the videos online and were rightly disgusted by them. I would urge anyone who sees poaching offences and cruelty of this type online to get in touch.
“This case should act as a reminder to all pet owners that anybody who fails to ensure an animal’s welfare is met could face criminal action. We would always ask anybody who witnesses cruelty or an animal in distress to contact the RSPCA direct or call 101.”
Jet– who was frightened but gentle in nature when officers located him– has been rehomed.
Sentencing: Jailed for 18 weeks. Banned from owning any animal for 10 years.
#TheList fraudulent puppy dealer Esther Rachel Titterton, born c. 1992, of Wheatlow Brook, Milwich, Staffordshire, but has also lived in Oak Road, Stone ST15 8NG
Esther Titterton was jailed for 18 months after admitting illegally breeding and selling puppies using fake Kennel Club paperwork.
Titterton was also charged with the breeding of dogs without a licence, sales of puppies without a pet shop licence and consumer protection offences.
Up to 39 puppies, many with health problems, were seized from Titterton’s home.
Trading Standards officers also found false vaccination certificates, which along with the Kennel Club papers were used to dupe customers.
Titterton pleaded guilty to 11 charges of dishonestly making false representation to make gain for herself and two others relating to an item used in the committing of fraud and her business being used to commit fraud.
Staffordshire County Council’s Trading Standards team said it worked with the Animal, Plant and Health Agency, police and the RSPCA to investigate Titterton after a complaint about her business activities in June 2017.
Titterton had been operating from her home, a farm in Milwich, and checks revealed it was not licensed to sell pets or breed dogs. The owner of the farm was not involved with the investigation.
Most of the puppies were cockapoos and health problems with dogs from so-called puppy farms is a common occurrence, trading standards said.
#TheList Jenny Johnson, born 13/02/1975), of Elmsleigh Drive, Midway, Swadlincote DE11 – kept her pet dog and cat in squalor in her filthy home
Jenny Johnson’s pets – Staffy Casper and moggy Riley – were forced to live in a hellish environment with conditions so appalling they made local authority environmental health officers retch when they visited the property.
Flooring throughout the property was covered in piles of animal excrement and saturated with urine. Kitchen worktops and items of furniture including the sofa were caked in filth.
Casper was found to have inflamed paws which a vet confirmed was related to the unhygienic conditions in which he was living.
Jobless Johnson pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to Staffy Casper and Riley the cat by allowing them to foul in her living room.
She then failed to clean up, resulting in the animals living in their own faeces and urine.
She also admitted a second charge of causing unnecessary suffering to the same animals by failing to secure their needs for a suitable environment, their need to be able to exhibit normal behaviour patterns and the need to be protected from pain, suffering injury and disease.
Ruksana Munir, prosecuting for South Derbyshire District Council, told the court: “Council officers entered the property on July 31, 2018, after they were sent a photograph of the condition of the property by the landlord who raised concerns.
“The landlord had let this property to the defendant three years ago and she had a cat and a dog and was concerned about their welfare.
“The defendant did not open the door [as she was out] and the landlord believed something criminal was taking place so exercised her right to unlock the back door, along with council officers.
“The dog was behind the door and walked out when it was opened.
“There was an overpowering foul smell upon entering.
“Officers were actually nauseated by the smell.
“They saw piles of faeces and pools of urine, both fresh and historic, around the house and on the kitchen worktops.
“The animals were living around this stomach-churning sight.”
Mrs Munir added: “There was a lengthy period of time where there was no effort made by the defendant to remove the waste.
“The sofa was heavily soiled and it had been ripped open. It was behaviour consistent with a dog being cooped up in a property for a long period of time.
“The dog is quite strong and with [Johnson’s] mobility issues she could not control the dog on a lead, which indicated she wasn’t going out to walk the dog.”
The court was told that Casper was seized at the time of the raid and Riley, who was not at home, was seized later.
The pets will now be rehomed following the conclusion of the case, having clocked up £3,000 in kennel fees – a cost picked up by the taxpayer.
Following the visit, Johnson was served with a letter in August 2018 but the court heard there were no attempts made by her to clear the waste and there was still urine and faeces in the living room.
The council’s pollution control officers later removed the waste at a cost of £450 which the court was told she is repaying.
It was also revealed that Johnson had previous involvement with council officers for an “identical” matter in 2014.
At that time, the premises was cleaned by the council and she was allowed to keep her dog.
Johnson underwent mental health tests which determined she had capacity to be responsible for her actions but an appropriate adult was asked to sit in for her police interview, the court was told.
The court was told that the legal fees to bring the case to prosecution totalled £5,938, of which £3,000 was kennel fees for both animals.
Chairman of the Bench Mr Hickson jailed Johnson for 12 weeks, telling her: “This one of the worst cases we have ever seen.
“Words fail us.
“It was a scene of horror, so stomach-churning that the officers were wretching.
“This was a prolonged period and what makes it worse is that it is not the first time.
“There was a cost to the taxpayer of cleaning up this disgusting mess.
“[Following the mental health tests] you are therefore completely responsible for the situation you find yourself in.”
Sentencing: jailed for 12 weeks and ordered to pay costs and charges totalling £3,115. She was banned from keeping animals for life.
#TheList backyard breeder Alex Johnson, born c. 1989, of Elmsmere Road, Stoke-on-Trent ST2 8EFT – banned from keeping dogs after police found videos of him allowing canines to jump up and bite padded arm sleeves.
Police officers launched their investigation when a dog that Alex Johnson was looking after bit a woman’s arm, leaving her with puncture wounds.
It led them to videos of the defendant allowing a dog to scale a fence in pursuit of a toy and another of a dog jumping up and biting an arm sleeve as a whip was cracked to the floor.
But Johnson – who also works as a dog photographer and bare-knuckle fighter – says the footage was linked to his involvement in organised dog sports.
North Staffordshire Justice Centre heard the woman was bitten by a Bully XL called Loyal at 2.30 pm on June 16, 2018.
Prosecutor Tom Griffiths said: “The defendant told it to sit and when she went past, it bit her on the arm.”
Staffordshire Police applied for Johnson to be hit with a five-year dog ban – and backed up their application with three videos featuring Johnson and dogs.
One of them featured a Dutch Herder which the defendant said had been with the Slovakian army. Footage showed Johnson walking up and down with the dog as it displayed its ability to understand commands. It was also seen to run towards a man with a padded sleeve which the animal bit onto while a whip was being cracked.
Another video showed the defendant wearing an arm sleeve which his own dog jumped up to bite. Another clip showed Johnson’s dog on a treadmill.
Mr Griffiths said two of the videos showed the animals being antagonised.
Commenting on the clip of Johnson’s own dog, he added: “He wants a reaction and he’s trained it to be aggressive. He is not a fit and proper person to have dogs.”
The court heard Johnson has also bought into a company specialising in canine supplements. He says the footage of the Dutch Herder was put together because he was selling the dog and one buyer had requested to see more of the animal’s training.
He said: “The dog was as friendly as anything and was not a protection dog. All I did was keep up her training. She was friendly and everyone on the estate loved playing with her.”
Referring to the videos of his own dog, Johnson said: “I have had no issues with her. It’s ridiculous to say she’s trained to fight, anybody that knows anything about that breed knows they are not for fighting, she is a Pocket Bully. I breed small versions of Bullys.
“The whip crack is so they are not scared. When I go to seminars I always take her with me. All our puppies are used to different noises so when they go to new homes we don’t get complaints.
“My training is basic and the bite side of things I go to seminars. The training I do is obedience – sit, stay and heel. I go to organised events.”
Johnson admitted being in charge of a dog dangerously out of control on Priory Road, Abbey Hulton, on June 16. But a trial was held regarding the possible disqualification.
District Judge Timothy Boswell said: “The footage shows the dogs behaving in ways that are dangerous and the way you are encouraging them to behave potentially makes them dangerous, by encouraging them to jump up and bite.
“You and other men are having to wear arm sleeves – people don’t normally walk up and down the street with an arm sleeve in case a dog bites them.
“The dogs on the footage are behaving in dangerous ways and it is appropriate to disqualify you from having custody of a dog for five years.”
Sentencing: 40 hours of unpaid work; £85 victim surcharge. Banned from keeping dogs for five years.