Jonathan Eales, prosecuting for the RSPCA, said a housekeeper was employed to look after the property and the fallow deer but he did not have money for animal feed.
He said the animal welfare charity visited the hall after it was contacted by walkers concerned at the condition of the deer.
Inspectors found the animals were emaciated, while their pen was bare of any grass and infested with molehills.
RSPCA workers began visiting to feed the animals, but three more died.
Mr Eales said post mortem examinations revealed the deer were severely underweight and emaciated.
He said: ‘These deer died as a result of neglect. They were malnourished, dehydrated, they were incapable of surviving in an enclosure where there was insufficient food and no shelter.’
Speaking after the hearing, a spokesman for the RSPCA recalled the state of the deer when they first arrived at the estate.
He said: ‘The deer were very skinny – you could clearly see their ribs and their hip bones were protruding.
‘We hoped to remove the animals but expert vets said they were too weak to be moved at that stage. Vets advised us to feed them and our officers, who had launched an investigation, visited them daily to monitor their condition.
‘Ongoing tests established that, in addition to underfeeding, there were problems with worms and poisonous ragwort in the field so the herd needed to be moved to new pastures before ragwort started to come through in spring.
‘The owners failed to move the herd so vets felt they needed to be taken into our care.’
The spokesperson added: ‘The deer have recovered well and are now living with a private deer keeper.
Sentencing: deprivation order to pass ownership of the surviving deer to the RSPCA. Banned from keeping deer for two years. No costs were awarded and no further penalties were ordered against the couple.
Nine members of a violent gang of travellers, who committed more than 200 burglaries in 11 months across multiple counties in the East of England region have been jailed for a total of 71 years.
Gang members would mask their faces using balaclavas and smash or force open doors or windows in broad daylight.
They would don forensic suits in a bid to outwit police and were so prolific that in one day in July 2017 they committed seven burglaries, eight the next, and a total of 50 for the whole month.
On one travellers’ site Cambridgeshire Constabulary found seven stolen Labrador puppies in the boot of a car as well as an arsenal of deadly weapons.
Nine of the gang pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglary:
Charlie Albert Webb, 20, from Newton Flotman, Norfolk – jailed for five years.
John Eli Loveridge, 42, of Greenways, Carleton Rode, Norfolk – jailed for seven-and-a-half years.
John Stanley Loveridge, 23, of Greenways, Carleton Rode, Norfolk – jailed for six-and-a-half years.
Joseph Holmes, 21, of Schole Road, Willingham – jailed for four years.
Danny Stone-Parker, 28, of Braintree Road, Great Dunmow – jailed for six-and-a-half years.
Timothy Stone-Parker, 24, of Clay Way, Ely – jailed for six-and-a-half years.
Joe John Spencer Loveridge, 19, of Winchester Road, Sandy, Bedfordshire – jailed for four years.
Richard Oakley, 27, of Sandy Park, Beck Row, Suffolk – jailed for five years.
Johnny Oakley, 25, of Sandy Park, Beck Row, Suffolk – jailed for five-and-a-half years.
A tenth man, Simon Oakley, 45, of Alburgh Road, Hempnall, Norwich, was found guilty of conspiracy to burgle on 31 October following a trial. He was jailed for nine years.
Detective Inspector Craig Harrison, who led the investigation, said: “These sentences reflect the scale and impact of this gang’s offending.
“Every one of their crimes had a victim so the trauma and devastation caused in quite a short space of time was immense. They clearly had no care at all for the impact their offending was having on communities, particularly in south and east Cambridgeshire, which were particularly badly hit, and, indeed, across the region.”
The gang targeted homes in rural areas, where they could make easy getaways and stole high-performance vehicles to give themselves a better chance of out-running police.
Offences were committed across Cambridgeshire including Littleport, Wisbech, Fordham, Burwell, Prickwillow, Dullingham, Ely, Waterbeach, Soham, Abington, Cambridge, Chippenham, Little Shelford, Isleham, Sawston, Hardwick, Willingham, March, Histon, Swavesey, Longstanton, Little Downham, Stow cum Quay, Doddington, St Ives, Stretham, Chippenham, Balsham, Cottenham, Cheveley, Elsworth, Swaffham Bulbeck, Fulbourn, Newmarket, Teversham, Boxworth, Yaxley and Friday Bridge.
Two other men – James Pateman, 55, of no fixed abode, and his brother, Thomas Brown, 54, of Fen Road, Chesterton, Cambridge – were also found guilty of handling stolen goods on 31 October following a trial at Norwich Crown Court. The court heard the men were involved in the disposal of jewellery between 12 March and 7 November, 2017.
Pateman was jailed for three-and-a-half years and Brown eight years.
Simon Oakley, who owns Stratton Quick Fit, a garage and workshop at Elite Business Park, in Salamanca Road, Norwich, had previously admitted possession of a firearm without a certificate and handling stolen goods.
He provided false registration plates and directed others to commit crime. He helped to hide stolen vehicles and pass them off as legitimate.
#TheList serial hare coursers James Crickmore, John Jefford, Denny Loveridge and Mark Loveridge all of Cambridge – all are now bound by a 3-year court injunction not to enter Cambridgeshire during the hare coursing season
Mark Loveridge, 38, of Milton Place, Horton, Slough, was suspected of 13 hare coursing incidents. He must not own a sighthound or drive a four-wheel-drive vehicle during hare coursing season.
John Jefford, 42, of 125/127 Scotland Road, Cambridge CB4 1QL was suspected of 13 hare coursing incidents. He must not own a sighthound or be in the company of another person with one.
Denny Loveridge, 38, of Mill Place Caravan Park, Datchet, Slough was suspected of 17 incidents. He must not own a sighthound or drive a four-wheel-drive vehicle during hare coursing season.
James Crickmore, 38, of 2 Sunningdale, Fen Road, Cambridge CB4 1UN was suspected of 26 incidents. He must not own a sighthound or be in the company of another person with one.
All four are bound by an injunction handed down by a county court judge in a successful case brought by Cambridgeshire police.
The injunctions will mean the men cannot enter any farm land in Cambridgeshire during the months of the hare coursing season (31 July to 31 March) for the next three years.
The men were caught by police using a new database designed to track and convict suspected hare coursers.
A police spokesman said: “The judge was satisfied that he had heard evidence showing the men had been involved in hare coursing over a two year period and therefore handed the men injunctions.”
PC Gareth Tanner said: “This is an excellent result for the rural community and one of the first of its kind. I’m confident that the conditions granted will be effective.
“This has been a considerable piece of work, both due to the complexity of the tactics used, and the amount of evidence presented at court because of the sheer persistence of these individuals.
“Hare coursing costs the farming community thousands every year in damages to crops and land, as well as the obvious cruelty issues.”
#TheList Sarah Pickup, born c. 1979, of Dennis Road, Cambridge CB5 – kept dogs, cats and lizards in appalling conditions at her home; 21 lizards and other exotic creatures found dead.
Pickup pleaded guilty to six offences under the Animal Welfare Act for mistreating dogs, cats and lizards.
Prosecutor Janita Patel told the court that the case came to light after the RSPCA was contacted by someone who had been asked to look after the animals while Pickup was on holiday.
The person was shocked by the conditions in the house and discovered numerous dead reptiles, some of which had been put in plastic bags – while the live reptiles were living in poor conditions.
They also found a Cavalier King Charles spaniel with a buster collar on and a swollen infected ear.
Pickup’s offences in full:
Causing unnecessary suffering to a Cavalier King Charles spaniel called Freddie by failing to seek veterinary care and attention for his ear condition
Failing to meet his needs for adequate flea control
Failing to meet the needs of a cat called Flower, 21 leopard geckos, one chameleon, one plated lizard, one blue-tongued skink, two axolotls, one gecko, and one corn snake, by failing to provide them with a suitable environment
Failing to meet the needs of a chameleon
Causing it unnecessary suffering by failing to investigate and address the cause of its poor bodily condition and weight loss
Failing to meet the needs of 15 leopard geckos and one axolotl by failing to provide an appropriate environment
In total, 26 live reptiles, two amphibians, 21 dead reptiles and 20 dead African land snails were found at the property.
RSPCA inspector Alex Coghlan, who investigated the incident, said: “The conditions at the home were appalling. There was a terrible smell coming from the home and there were dead reptiles just dumped in plastic bags in the garden.
“Many of the live reptiles were being housed in inappropriate conditions, with no water, light or heat, yet the vivariums which did have heaters were just not plugged in or the bulbs had gone out.
“It was heartbreaking to see so many animals just left in such awful conditions.
“Exotic animals need specialist care and sadly these animals had not been looked after appropriately.”
All animals were signed over into the care of the RSPCA and taken to a specialist facility.
Sadly one leopard gecko had to be put to sleep to prevent further suffering.
Sentencing: 12-week custodial sentence, suspended for 12 months; total of £415 costs and charges; 40 hours of rehabilitation with the probation service. Banned for life from keeping animals.
#TheList huntsman George R Adams, born c. 1951, of 2 Ramshill Cottages, Stamford Road, Peterborough PE6 7EZ – used a pack of hounds to kill a fox
Adams, a huntsman with the Fitzwilliam Hunt, was in charge of the pack of hounds when it killed a fox on January 1, 2016.
The court heard that the hunt started in Wansford, Cambridgeshire and that the fox was eventually killed near Elton by the pack of hounds.
Adams’ co-defendant John Mease, of 3 Kennels Cottages, Milton Park, Peterborough PE6 7AB, who was present at the hunt with a golden eagle, was found not guilty after a court heard he used the bird of prey to catch animals, rather than a pack of dogs.
Mease was further cleared of causing unnecessary cruelty to an animal despite ‘dispatching’ another fox by driving a KNIFE through its eye after it was caught by his raptor in 2013.
The court heard from saboteurs Ruth Nichols and Stephen Milton, who had tracked the hunt.
Video footage shown to the court taken by Mr Milton, which involved around 40 hounds – with the sound of a hunting horn clearly heard.
Mr Milton said he had seen the hunt tracking the fox, and had not heard any calls to ward the dogs off from the fox.
Adams, who joined the Fitzwilliam Hunt in 1981 and became a huntsman in 1984, told the court he had not seen the fox before it was killed.
When asked if it was his intention to kill the fox with hounds, he said: ‘Absolutely not. We wanted to flush it out for the bird of prey.’
Mr Mease told the court there was no chance for him to release his golden eagle to catch the fox because the saboteurs were in the field, which would provide a risk to the bird.
He was asked why he never radioed Adams to call the hunt off.
He said: ‘A hunt is a fluid thing. It was changing minute by minute. It was the heat of the moment and it was the first time I had come across saboteurs in my 11 years.’
He told the court he was in charge of the bird but had no control over the pack of hounds, which was Adams’ responsibility.
Speaking after the trial, Hunt Saboteurs Association spokesperson Lee Moon said: ‘To anyone who witnessed the events on the day in question it was abundantly clear that a wild mammal was hunted and killed illegally, in a most gruesome manner.
‘Although a fox had to suffer and die due to the blatant and remorseless actions of the defendants we are pleased that hunt saboteurs were able to bring at least one of them to justice.
‘We would like to thank Cambridgeshire police who conducted a robust and unbiased investigation.
‘The loopholes and exemptions in the current act have always been cynically exploited by hunts in order to operate much as they would have done prior to the ban.
‘The guilty verdict proves that hunting with a full pack of hounds is not the same as Falconry and the judge in summing up confirmed as much.
‘The outcome will of course have wider reaching implications for all those hunts around the country who claim to use this exemption.
‘We will continue to vigorously oppose those who gain enjoyment from the torture and killing of our wildlife and will use all the tools at our disposal to those ends.
‘We have the overwhelming support of the general public who wish to see an end to the barbaric minority pastime.’
Sentencing: fined £1,000 and ordered to pay £950 costs.
#TheList: Tommy Wall, born c. 1960, of the notorious Irish travellers site at Smithy Fen, near Cottenham, Cambridgeshire – failed to get treatment for his dog’s fractured leg
Wall was found guilty by a district judge of causing unnecessary suffering to his dog, Patch.
The court heard he had failed to ensure the dog received appropriate veterinary care for a fractured leg between the period of May 2 and 10, 2018.
The judge was told Wall had taken his dog to a veterinary clinic for treatment, but when advised it could be a fractured leg, he left with Patch because he didn’t have the money to pay for it.
Concerned for the dog’s welfare a call was made to the RSPCA and an inspector visited Wall and gave him details of an RSPCA clinic which could help him.
But when the dog owner failed to attend the clinic on two separate occasions, the RSPCA took the animal to the vet, and after being advised the leg clearly appeared to be fractured, the charity had the dog seized by the police and placed into its care.
RSPCA inspector Alex Coghlan, said: “Poor Patch would have suffered for a number of days because his owner failed to get him the necessary treatment.
“There is just no excuse for allowing a dog to suffer for such a long period of time, especially when he had been advised the leg could be fractured and that help was offered so that he could get the treatment for Patch.
“Patch’s leg was amputated and he has been cared for by one of our fosterers who may now want to rehome him permanently after the court has signed him over into our care.
“I hope the severity of this sentence acts as a reminder to pet-owners that they have a legal responsibility to seek veterinary treatment for their animals when they require it.
“There are many organisations out there who can help if there are financial issues. It simply isn’t acceptable to leave an animal to suffer.”
Sentence: 18-week custodial sentence; £500 costs. Disqualified from keeping all animals for five years (expires January 2023).
#TheList Michael Garner, born 1966, of 13 Brookfurlong, Peterborough PE3 7LG – punched and sexually stimulated a dog on Facebook Live
Michael Garner appeared alongside brother Thomas Garner, born 09/02/1969 and of the same address, to face animal welfare charges after a video of the dog, an American bulldog named Roscoe, being abused was posted on Facebook.
Michael Garner pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal by punching the dog around the head. His brother pleaded not guilty and was set to face trial in June 2017. The outcome of the trial isn’t known.
Giles Beaumont prosecuting told the court that Michael Garner was seen on Facebook Live hitting the dog – owned by Thomas Garner – on or around the head at least 16 times after the dog had hold of his arm sleeve.
He said that Michael Garner “appears to sexually stimulate Roscoe with a glass object.”
Mr Beaumont added: “The dog has been goaded into this game.”
Roscoe suffered bruising to his lip as a result of the beating, and the court heard that a vet examining the American Bulldog believed he had been normalised to the treatment he suffered.
The court was shown the Facebook Live video where the punches can be seen. Pornography was also showing on a screen in the background.
The RSPCA had been alerted to the video by members of the public.
One person wrote on Facebook at the time:
Absolutely gutted and mortified to what I have just witnessed. 3 men done a live feed on a page called roast my selfie, watching porn, whilst performing sexual acts towards a white boxer dog then Antagonising it to fight back, As the dog fights back, one of the men start punching the dog and beating the hell out of it. All of this was live. I have contacted the rspca, RAID, a few peterborough selling sites etc and the police and I have an appointment with an officer at 10am tomorrow morning as there has been screen shots took of all what has happened. Never have I been so shocked, nauseous, disturbed and helpless to what I feel right now. People share his picture!!!! He needs to go viral!
Rebecca Keogh defending said: “It’s certainly unpleasant and uncomfortable viewing.
“It’s clear he was caught up in the incident. It does not excuse that behaviour but he was very drunk.
“If he was not drunk he would not have done it.
“It was lucky he was not seriously hurt goading a dog that size.”
Sentencing Michael Garner, District Judge Ken Sheraton said: “To be frank I see no sense in that behaviour, drunk or not.
“I see less sense why you would put this on Facebook to show to the world. I’m surprised you’ve reached the age you have and not come to your senses.”
Michael Garner has previous convictions in the last three years of producing cannabis and domestic abuse.
Sentencing: Michael Garner was given a six week prison sentence suspended for 12 months and a four-month curfew. £200 costs. Disqualified from keeping an animal or having control of an animal (period not given).
As noted above, Thomas Garner pleaded not guilty to failing to prevent unnecessary cruelty to an animal and failing to ensure the welfare of an animal and was set to face trial in June 2017. Unfortunately the media failed to report the outcome.
#TheList Emma Louise Clark (also known as Emma Lounds or Emma Anderson), originally of St Peters Walk, Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, and more recently at A1 Deerfield Road, March, Cambridgeshire PE15 9AH – starved three dogs, two cats, two rabbits, a pair of snakes and a lizard to death over a period of nearly four months
Clark’s pets included a German Shepherd called Beast, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier named Tyson and a Mexican hairless dog called Stanley. She also had a cat called Mittens, a kitten called Lucy and a leopard gecko called Leonard. Clark also had a boa constrictor and a corn snake as well as two domestic rabbits.
All of them died as a result of the neglect they suffered.
RSPCA officers had made numerous visits to the house between 1 November 2014 and 22 February 2015, but each time they were told by Clark all the animals had been re-homed.
When they were eventually discovered in March it is thought many of the creatures had been dead for months.
RSPCA officials said it was one of the worst cases of animal neglect they had ever seen, and totally avoidable.
Sheona Morley, from the charity, said: “In my 20 years, this is the most horrific case I’ve ever been to – it is also the saddest.
“It was absolute horror to see all those animals had died from starvation, left in their cages with no access to food or water.”
Magistrates told Clark her animals were effectively locked up and starved to death.
Sentence: 18 weeks in custody and banned from keeping animals for life.