County Armagh, Northern Ireland: Rebecca and Jessica Fiddes

#TheList Rebecca Fiddes, 47, of Markethill, Craigavon and her daughter Jessica Jayne Fiddes, 23, of Willow Dean, Armagh – left two horses to starve in filthy conditions

Rebecca and Jessica Fiddes of County Armagh, Northern Ireland neglected these two horses
Rebecca and Jessica Fiddes of County Armagh, Northern Ireland neglected these two horses and left them to starve in filthy conditions

Rebecca and Jessica Fiddes pleaded guilty at Armagh Magistrates Court on Friday 17/8/2018 to causing unnecessary suffering to two horses in their care.

A case was brought against both women by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council under the provisions of the Welfare of Animals Act (Northern Ireland) 2011 after a member of the public raised concerns about the horses’ welfare in November 2015.

An Animal Welfare Officer, assisted by a veterinary surgeon, visited the property where the horses were being kept and found them to be extremely malnourished with no food and living in filthy conditions. After being certified as suffering, they were taken into the care of the council.

A council spokesperson commented: “This ruling will hopefully serve as a reminder to anyone who causes unnecessary suffering to animals that they will be brought before the courts and dealt with appropriately.

“Cases of cruelty and neglect can be reported to our Animal Welfare team who will use enforcement powers to fully investigate all cases and take formal action, which may include the issuing of Improvement Notices, and where appropriate, seizing animals and prosecuting offenders.”

Sentencing: 
Rebecca Fiddes was fined £500 and banned from keeping animals for 10 years (expires August 2028). Jessica Fiddes was fined £250 and banned from keeping animals for just two years (expires August 2020).  Both women were also ordered to pay legal costs. 

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