#TheList illegal puppy farmer Jamie Parvizi (aka Jamie Finnegan), born 05/06/1979 of 13 Stone Chair Lane, Scholar Green ST7 3JJ – sold dying dogs to unsuspecting families
Parvizi, who together with partner Hayley Potts, traded under the name ‘Tinypom’, pretended he was selling healthy pure bred Pomeranians when families inquired about dogs.
But the pets – which he kept locked in the downstairs toilet – would fall ill shortly afterwards, forcing buyers to shell out thousands in vets’ bills simply to keep the animals alive.
One victim told the court how she bought a £750 puppy for her six-year-old twin daughters.
She stumped up more than £5,000 in vet fees to try to save the animal which died after being diagnosed with parvovirus.
Parviz admitted 13 charges of fraud over a two-year period. He also admitted seven charges of causing unnecessary suffering to animals and one of failing to take reasonable steps to ensure animals were properly cared for.
Sentencing him at Stoke Crown Court, Judge Simon Berkson said it had been a ‘sophisticated fraud’.
‘You were misleading the public as to the health and welfare of the pups you were selling,’ he said. ‘Your job was to make sure the pups were sold and get some money.
‘The victims lost money and their pet. The animals suffered.
‘The fraud was sophisticated. There was significant planning. It went on over a sustained period. There was a large number of victims.’
The court was told how someone ‘higher up the chain’ in the scam placed adverts in newspapers and online to attract buyers, who then contacted Parvizi.
Prosecutor Hazel Stevens said: ‘He presented them with paperwork and he made them believe they were bred by him.
‘Nobody knows the origin and type of these dogs. There is no paperwork to be sure where they came from.’
Ms Stevens added that ten puppies were removed from Parvizi’s home when the police and RSPCA executed a warrant.
They have since been cared for by the RSPCA, although one has died.
Isobel Thomas, defending, said Parvizi works at Tesco and that he had racked up £27,000 of debts. He and his wife had also lost their dogs.
RSPCA Acting Chief Inspector Jayne Bashford said they were alerted to the scam after receiving a ‘flurry’ of calls from upset customers.
‘From our early enquiries we established that lots of money was exchanging hands and people who were unknowingly buying sick dogs were stuck with huge vet bills,’ she said.
‘The investigation led us to Parvizi’s property in Scholar Green and when we went in with police we rescued ten Pomeranians from the address.
‘We found two adults – a male and a female – shut in a downstairs toilet and a number of puppies were being kept in the house. Some were being kept in purpose-built pods in the garden and some smaller, young pups were inside.
‘One of the puppies was collapsed and was severely lethargic, and some of the others were in poor condition with discharge from the eyes and nose.’
She added: ‘The sentence reflects the severity and level of cruelty. We hope it sends out a strong message.
‘Puppy farming is a trade which is rife across the UK and one the RSPCA is working very hard to combat.’
Sentencing: jailed for 33 months and banned from keeping animals for life.