Category Archives: cows

Burton, Rossett, Wrexham: Wilfred and Ian Francis

#TheList Wilfred Francis, born c. 1981, and his brother Ian Martin Francis, born c. 1983, both of Yr Ackery Farm, Dark Lane, Burton, Rossett, Wrexham LL12 0AE – for the mistreatment of cattle on their farm

Cruel and negligent farmers Wilfred Francis and Ian Martin Francis of Wrexham, Wales
Wilfred Francis (left) and his brother Ian Francis were not banned from keeping animals despite their shocking neglect of cattle on their farm

Wilfred and Ian Francis pleaded guilty to a number of offences under the Animal Welfare Act 2006.

On February 5, 2019, an unannounced visit by Wrexham Council was made to the farm after receiving a complaint of a dog eating a dead calf.

On arrival at the farm officers of the Food and Farming team accompanied by an Animal & Plant Health Agency (APHA) Vet found dead cattle and calves, animals with none or insufficient bedding. Some were without food and water and had access to hazardous object around the premises.

Ian Dillon, acting on behalf of the council, told the court: “Two dead cattle were being picked at by chickens. One had been unlawfully killed by Wilfred Francis by injecting it with anaesthetic.

“One cow had to be put to sleep after because it was left without medication after breaking its hip calfing two weeks previously.”

Mr Dillon said: “There were other cows with no access to water or food, some kept near to scrap metal which could have caused them harm and a general failure to clean and disinfect to keep away flies and disease.

“Waste food products had been left on the farm. Mince pies, cup cakes and ice cream was fed to the cattle. Some animals were left lying in slurry.”

Photographs taken by animal welfare officers showed animals living in squalid conditions. The officers made subsequent visits to the farm.

Mr Dillon said: “One calf was drowning in slurry. Another had been born the previous evening and had little bedding that was filled with slurry. The cow that had given birth was exhausted and had been given no food or water.

“Another newborn calf seen on March 5 was only just able to keep its nose above the slurry.”

Conditions did improve said Mr Dillon but eventually, the council applied to seize animals in May 2019 to stop unnecessary suffering. The herd reduced from 140 down to 40 head of cattle.

Sentencing: 16-week prison sentence suspended for 12 months. Ordered to pay £3,000 costs each to Wrexham County Council – at a minimum rate of £50 per month. There was no order against the brothers keeping animals in the future.

Daily Post
Wrexham.com

Plungar, Nottingham: Paul robinson

#TheList Paul G Robinson, born c. 1969, of Hill Farm, Harby Lane, Plungar, Nottingham NG13 0JH – for severe neglect of pigs, cattle and sheep

Robinson was visited by Trading Standards officers after a member of the public contacted them about the conditions his animals were being kept in.

When they arrived at Hill Farm, they found pigs were living in darkness and one ewe was not getting enough food to produce milk for her undernourished lamb.

Officers from the RSPCA attended the same day and they immediately took all 27 cattle and 46 pigs from the 20-acre farm for welfare reasons.

The sheep, goats, chickens and other animals were left on the farm.

Robinson pleaded guilty to 16 charges relating to the cattle, pigs and sheep.

But magistrates agreed to a ban that only included pigs and cattle.

While some of the offences he admitted were for causing suffering to his livestock, others related to failures to properly tag animals, notify the government about animal purchases and deaths and following codes of practice.

Adam Clemens, prosecuting on behalf of Leicestershire County Council Trading Standards, said: “The cattle and pigs had insufficient feed and the sheep had for the most part no feed.

“A third of the pens had no water and cattle were thin.”

He said pig carcasses were seen lying among the pigs while sheep carcasses had been burned.

Six further visits were made to the farm by the Trading Standards officers.

When Robinson was interviewed by Trading Standards the answers he gave were “cause for concern”, Mr Clemens said.

He said Robinson had never read any codes of practice farmers should follow, and did not think animals needed access to food and water at all times.

When asked about the burned lamb carcasses, Robinson said he believed his dogs had dragged the dead animals onto a bonfire, although he later pleaded guilty to burning four lamb carcasses.

Robinson told the interviewers he cleaned the animal sheds out every three to six months and saw no problem with the way the animals were being kept.

Mr Clemens said there had been many other concerns about the farm in recent years.

There was not a single year between 2012 and 2017 Trading Standards did not visit the farm and Mr Clemens said had no information about years prior to 2012 because the records were not available.

Kim Lee, representing Robinson, said his client had always been “less than a junior partner” to his father who “would rule the farm with a rod of iron”.

He said his client had been “overwhelmed” since his father’s death a year ago and was also struggling to look after his mother, who suffers from dementia.

Meanwhile, the farm was making a loss of about £3,000 per year, he said.

Mr Lee said: “This is a man who recognises the error of his ways and has taken steps to address the errors of the past.

“His financial situation is precarious. It’s no life. There’s no profit.”

Mr Lee asked the magistrates not to ban Robinson from keeping all animals so that he could continue as a farmer.

He said: “It’s all he’s known – man and boy.”

He said his client would not mind being banned from keeping pigs and cattle and would reduce the number of sheep on his farm from 81 to no more than 50.

Sentencing: six-month jail sentence suspended for two years; ordered to pay total of £2,115 costs and charges. Lifetime ban on keeping pigs and cattle.

Leicester Mercury

Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire: Daniel Bowd

#TheList Daniel Mark Bowd, born 12/10/1991, of Old Stores Cottage, School Lane, Lower Leigh, Stoke On Trent ST10 4SS – kept starving dogs, cows and pigs in atrocious conditions on a smallholding

Animal abuser Daniel Mark Bowd of Lower Leigh, Stoke on Trent

Daniel Bowd. former managing director of recently failed waste management company DM Bowd Environmental Services Ltd, kept dogs, pigs and cattle on a smallholding on Raddle Lane, Leigh, near Uttoxeter, but abandoned the animals to starve.

Staffordshire County Council raided the smallholding in January 2019 following a tip-off.

Inspectors found:

  • Five dogs in pens covered in faeces and urine
  • Pigs and cattle with no food or water
  • Pig skulls and smaller animal skulls in a field
  • A blood-covered pig which had been eating a dead pig

Prosecutor Khalid Mahmood told North Staffordshire Justice Centre: “A small pig had a blood-covered face as it had been eating the dead pig that was inside the pen. The officers then went looking in the pen and found skulls of dead pigs.

“The officers also saw cattle with no food or water and there was no dry lying area for them. Similarly, there was no dry lying area for any other animals.”

RSPCA officers inspected the dogs. They had wood in their rectum, their abdomens and guts felt empty, and they had scratches and damaged ears as if they had been fighting.

Bowd told the probation service that he was £60,000 in debt. He was working 14 hours every day just to ‘keep his head above water’ on a self-employed basis.

Lucy Taylor-Grimes, mitigating, said: “He just couldn’t keep up with the volume of food that the animals needed.”

Bowd admitted a catalogue of animal welfare offences against pigs and dogs. He also admitted failing to dispose of animal bones correctly, failing to maintain a register of the cattle on his holding, and not maintaining a proper veterinary medicine record for his livestock.

Sentencing: 18-week jail sentence, suspended for 12 months; ordered to pay £1,615 in court costs. Lifetime ban on keeping pigs, cattle and dogs with the possibility of review after five years.

StokeonTrentLive

Uttoxeter, Staffordshire: Stephen Croxall

#TheList farmer Stephen J Croxall, born 03/12/1968, of 2 Whitehall Close, Kingstone, Uttoxeter ST14 8RN – left livestock to die in a frozen field

Cruel Stephen Croxall left cows and sheep to starve in miserable conditions on his Uttoxeter farm
Cruel Stephen Croxall left cows and sheep to starve in miserable conditions on his Uttoxeter farm

In a case brought by Staffordshire County Council, Stephen Croxall pleaded guilty to 14 charges of breaching the Animal Welfare Act.

The offences happened in Croxall’s field, in Blithbury Road, Hamstall Ridware, Rugeley.

Charges ranged from causing unnecessary suffering to sheep, lambs and cattle to failing to record the administration of medicines.

When animal health officers visited the farm on January 31, 2018, they found the animals starving and freezing to death.

Cruel Stephen Croxall left cows and sheep to starve in miserable conditions on his Uttoxeter farm

One lamb was hypothermic and another dead under a fallen gate. A young calf was also found very vocal and thin, indicating it had not been fed or watered. Several other animals had to be put down.

Croxall told the court he was tired from his full-time job as a wood cutter and that vets were too expensive.

Lucy Daniels, prosecuting for the council, said: “It was -3C at 11am. The land was described as white and frozen.

“Officers saw 20 bales of silage, which were black and mouldy.

“When the officers entered the field, the animals were hungry as they were running towards the officers for food.

“There were buckets of water but these were frozen. The grass was frozen and there was no hay or straw.

“A wall of metal in the shed had been broken and sharp edges were sticking into the shed.

“There was also an emaciated calf, which must have been there for days. Officers could see its spine.”

The animal had to be put down, but the vet was unable to find a vein in which to inject the calf because of its dehydrated state, the court heard.

Cruel Stephen Croxall left cows and sheep to starve in miserable conditions on his Uttoxeter farm

A pre-sentence report on Croxall said: “There was no intention or malice behind the offences.

“He has worked on farms for 35 years and he has entrenched methods of looking after animals and it appears this is outdated with regards to Defra’s code of practice.

“His aunt, who died some years ago, was the record keeper.”

The report also said there was a financial strain on the farming industry and Croxall was spending fewer hours on the farm due to his other work.

It said: “He simply was not there to look after the animals.”

The court heard Croxall’s wife died in 2010 and he subsequently had psychiatric treatment.

Lucy Taylor-Grimes, defending, added: “He is a man who is not good with reading and writing and has found this whole situation difficult to follow.”

Sentencing Croxall, magistrates told him: “There was neglect for at least a week and a number of animals had to be put down.

“We would jail you. However, due to your early guilty plea, your personal circumstances, your education difficulties and the loss of your wife, we will suspend your sentence.”

Sentencing: 16-week jail sentence, suspended for 12 months; ordered to pay £1,000 in costs. Lifetime ban on keeping animals with review after five years.

DerbyshireLive 28/09/2019
DerbyshireLive 11/09/2019

Torpoint, Cornwall: Justine Peroni

#TheList Justine Arabella Peroni, born 10/09/1967, of The Coombe, Deviock Hill, Downderry, Torpoint, Cornwall PL11 3NA – cruelty to cattle on her smallholding

Irresponsible Justine Peroni of Torpoint, Cornwall is banned from keeping animals for five years for her cruel and negligent treatment of cattle on her smallholding.
Irresponsible Justine Peroni is banned from keeping animals for five years for her cruel and negligent treatment of cattle on her smallholding.

Justine Peroni admitted five charges of animal cruelty. These included a charge of “unnatural breeding” for allowing a bull to breed with his mother.

Irresponsible Justine Peroni of Torpoint, Cornwall is banned from keeping animals for five years for her cruel and negligent treatment of cattle on her smallholding.

During a visit to Peroni’s smallholding Cornwall Council’s Animal Health team and vets from DEFRA found emaciated cattle, one cow with “pus dripping from its udder”, and fields covered in hazardous objects.

The four other charges Peroni admitted were:

  • Two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a cow by failing to provide prompt effective treatment
  • Failing to provide a suitable environment for cattle by allowing them access to items that had the potential to injure them
  • Failing to tag a calf within 20 days of its birth

Jane Tomlinson, the council’s Head of Trading Standards, said Peroni ignored the council’s advice, including the “most obvious cattle welfare needs”.

Sentencing: six-week curfew; ordered to pay £2,000 in council costs. Banned from keeping animals for five years.

BBC News
Plymouth Herald

Camrose, Haverfordwest: Mark Mathias

#TheList Mark Phillip Mathias, born November 1978, of Chapel Hill, Camrose, Haverfordwest SA62 6JN – left dozens of cows to suffer on his farm

Cows were kept in horrific conditions at Mark Mathias's farm in Camrose, Haverfordwest, Wales.

Four cows belonging to Mark Mathias had to be put down to prevent further suffering.

Distressing images from the farm show cows lying on their sides in field, and a pile of carcasses left in a farmyard area

The ruling follows a prosecution by Pembrokeshire County Council.

The court heard that between March 20 and July 12, 2018, 14 visits were made to the farm by animal health and welfare inspectors.

The first visit followed a report of a calf being on its side in the farm yard which was thought to be suffering with no bedding or care provided.Cow carcasses were also discovered by officers on a yard near baled feed for the herd and inside a large trailer.

Other welfare concerns were noted within the herd and notices were issued to dispose of the carcasses correctly, to address welfare concerns and to improve conditions on the farm.

The court was told that throughout the ensuing visits, additional notices and further advice was given to Mathias by officers and vets.

These related to conditions on the farm in which the cattle were being kept, welfare concerns, including for specific animals which required veterinary attention and for removal of animal by-products.

The court was told that four animals had suffered unnecessarily which resulted in them being destroyed.

A large number of cattle had also been moved onto the site while a TB restriction notice was in place, prohibiting moves on or off site without a licence.

Mathias pleaded guilty to failing to observe the terms of the notice.

As part of mitigation for Mathias, reference was made to the mental, physical and financial issues involved in the farming business.

Sentencing: 200-hour community service order; costs and charges totalling £585. Disqualified from keeping, owning, participating in, or influencing the keeping of bovine animals for a period of 12 months.

Milford Mercury

Bangor Teifi, Llandysul, West Wales: Margarette and Norman Cooper

#TheList Margarette Cooper, born c.1938, and son Norman Cooper, born c. 1963, both of Gilfach Chwith, Bangor Teifi, Llandysul, Ceredigion SA44 4JE – convicted of animal cruelty after dozens of cows died in ‘nightmare scenes’ at their farm

One of the cows was tethered to prevent her from falling on her side. She died whilst still tied to the wall
One of the cows was tethered to prevent her from falling on her side. She died whilst still tied to the wall

An investigation by Ceredigion Council found a total of 84 cattle had died or had been seriously neglected at the farm run by Margarette and Norman Cooper.

In one shed, a group of exhausted, hungry and dehydrated cows had gone to lie down and die
In one shed, a group of exhausted, hungry and dehydrated cows had gone to lie down and die

On the farm, the carcasses of dead cows were found decaying alongside surviving cattle. Among those that had survived, some had to be put down following examination due to the seriousness of their health and their suffering.

“The animal health officers involved with this case have never experienced such appalling conditions at any farm in their careers,” said Alun Williams, corporate lead officer for policy and performance at Ceredigion Council.

“Most of the staff are from farming backgrounds, but they faced horrific circumstances in investigating and retrieving the live animals and the carcasses.”

Sentencing: both were given six months in jail, suspended for two years and ordered to pay costs and charges totalling £2615 each. Norman Cooper was ordered to carry out 150 hours of unpaid work. Both were disqualified from keeping any animals for 10 years, other than their existing four elderly dogs.

North Wales Live

Methlick, Aberdeenshire: Marshall Hay

#TheList Marshall Hay, born c. 1940, of Castlehill, Methlick, Aberdeenshire AB41 – left three steer bovines to suffer in agony with ingrowing horns that had penetrated their skin; all three euthanised

Farmer Marshall Hay had a complete disregard for the welfare of his animals

Hay pled guilty to two charges of causing unnecessary suffering under section 19 of the Animal Health & Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006 to a black and white male steer, and consecutively two red male cattle.

Senior Scottish SPCA inspector Alison Simpson said, “This charge was dealt as Hay failed to seek standard veterinary treatment for his cattle, predominantly three males.

“The first of the three was a black and white castrated male, who, upon veterinary examination was discovered to have an ingrown right horn, protruding four inches into the sinus, creating a seven centimetre wide hole in his head. After removing the ingrown horn, dressing the wound and injecting antibiotics it was noticed he had a broken right tibia. The decision was immediately made to euthanise the cow to prevent further suffering.

“The second of the cattle in question, a red castrated male, was found to have both horns growing into the side of his head. The horn on the right hand side of his head was embedded into the soft tissue. The ingrown horn on the right side had punctured the skin 5 centimetres, leaving a hole in which you could insert a finger. The horn on the left hand side was also overgrown although not to such a bad extent.

“The last was also a red coloured castrated male. His right horn had also grown into his head and the left side round the front of his eye. The horn on the right hand side was embedded into the soft tissue and once removed, was also found to be piercing five centimetres into his head. The horn on the left hand side was obscuring the animal’s eye and starting to penetrate the skin.

“The decision was made to put both red males to sleep to prevent further suffering.

“We are happy that Hay pled guilty and this sentence handed down.

“Prosecution is always a last resort for the Scottish SPCA and every effort was made to work with Hay prior to this, however the disregard for his animal’s welfare led us to having no choice.

“The remaining cattle at that time were moved from the premises, however we are aware that after these cattle were moved, more have since arrived at Hay’s property.

“Hay has two months before the ban is enforced.”

Sentencing: two-year ban on keeping or owning cattle, suspended by two months.

Scottish SPCA News

Llandysul, Ceredigion: David and Evan Meirion Davies

#TheList farmers David Davies , born 1956, and brother Evan Meirion Davies, born 1969, both of Penffynnon Farm, Bangor Teifi, Llandysul SA44 4HX – for a catalogue of appalling cruelty to cattle

Cattle in the care of brothers David and Evan Meirion Davies were housed in terrible conditions, with no food, water or dry lying area.
Cattle in the care of brothers David and Evan Meirion Davies were housed in terrible conditions, with no food, water or dry lying area.

Brothers David Davies, and Evan Meirion Davies admitted 13 charges of animal cruelty.

The prosecution follows a visit by animal health officers and a Animal and Plant Health Agency vet to the farm in April 2018.

Officers found 58 cattle carcasses in various states of decay in the cattle sheds and surrounding fields. The remaining cattle were housed in terrible conditions, with no food, water or dry lying area.

The vet confirmed that the cattle were being caused unnecessary suffering, and also formed the opinion that the dead cattle had also succumbed to the horrendous conditions found in the sheds, and died of neglect. The vet had to euthanise two cattle to stop further suffering during visits to the premises.

This was the worst case of animal welfare neglect seen to date by the animal health team of Ceredigion County Council, they said.

In sentencing, the magistrates acknowledged the evidence of horrendous suffering, inadequate care and poor animal husbandry displayed by both defendants to the animals.

The Cabinet member responsible for public protection, Cllr Gareth Lloyd said: “This was a truly shocking case of neglect that caused terrible suffering to so many animals. We will not hesitate to act decisively whenever we need to protect animal welfare.”

“This was an extreme case, and in no way reflects on the dedication of the overwhelming majority of Ceredigion farmers in maintaining the highest standards of care for their animals.”

Sentencing:
16 weeks’ imprisonment suspended for 12 months. Ordered to pay costs to the council of £1,500 each. Disqualified from keeping any animals of any description for five years. The pair were allowed 28 days in which to make the necessary arrangements.

Cambrian News

Crediton, Devon: Michael Rice

#TheList farmer Michael Rice, born c. 1950, of High View, Woodland Head, Crediton EX17 5HE – kept cattle in appalling conditions; failed to treat very poorly cow.

Officers described the living conditions for the animals throughout the farm as ‘generally poor’, as several animals did not have a dry lying area and had access to sharp objects which posed a risk to their health such as farm machinery and rusty nails.

The case was brought by Devon, Somerset and Torbay Trading Standards Service following an investigation into concerns for the welfare of his cattle.

Trading standards officers and a vet from the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) visited the farm and discovered a bovine which appeared to have been unable to stand for several weeks with no access to water or supplementary feed.

Rice had previously been advised by a vet that if the animal’s health didn’t improve it should be culled. However several weeks later, when trading standards visited his farm, he had made no attempt to do so.

The vet believed that the animal was subjected to ‘avoidable and unnecessary suffering’ under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 both by failure to cull without delay and failure to isolate the sick animal and house it in suitable accommodation with dry comfortable bedding.

District Judge Matson described the conditions on the farm as ‘appalling’ and the condition the bovine was left in as ‘extremely upsetting and distressing’.

Sentencing:
16-week suspended prison sentence, fined £6,970 and banned from keeping animals for 10 years.

Farming UK