Tag Archives: gypsy traveller

Shepperton, Surrey: Maurice Smith

#TheList traveller and habitual criminal Maurice Smith, born c. 1988, of Hawthorn Way, Shepperton TW1 – subjected a horse to prolonged neglect and mistreatment

Traveller Maurice Smith from Shepperton, Surrey, subjected horse April to neglect and ill-treatment
April

Maurice Smith, who has a previous conviction for conning a 92-year-old woman out of her life savings, pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to an animal.

Gypsy traveller Smith, formerly of Littleton Lane Caravan Park in Shepperton and a drug and alcohol abuser, was charged under the Animal Welfare Act after evidence emerged of how he had subjected the horse, named April, to prolonged neglect and ill-treatment, which had left her in extreme distress.

A number of witnesses initially contacted police in April 2018 to report that the horse was in distress. She had been left double rugged in temperatures of 24 degrees without shade and was sweating profusely.

Police attended the location and decided that April needed immediate medical care and seized her under the Animal Welfare Act.

After a full medical examination by a vet, April was found to be undernourished, with multiple sores, was wearing ill-fitting handmade shoes which were causing her foot pain, and was suffering from worms or a viral infection. The vet said that she had been subjected to poor management and undue suffering.

Smith was identified as April’s owner but initially denied that she belonged to him when he was interviewed. However, he later admitted that she was his and said that he had asked a vet to examine April and that she was being treated with antibiotics. However, he could not provide any details in relation to the treatment April received.

The court heard evidence from a number of witnesses in relation to the lack of care given to April, to which Smith was also unable to provide any explanation.

Investigating officer PC Chloe Hodgkinson said: “This was a complex investigation which took many months to bring to fruition.

“I was called to deal with the incident and was shocked by the pitiful state April was in. Due to her condition, I decided to seize her under the Animal Welfare Act so that she could immediately begin receiving the medical treatment that she needed.

“From speaking to a number of witnesses, it soon became apparent that April had been suffering over a prolonged period. I put a case together against her owner, Maurice Smith, which resulted in him being charged with causing unnecessary suffering to an animal and being brought before the court last week.”

PC Hodgkinson added: “April has since received the care and treatment that she needed and is making a good recovery. I hope that this case will deter other owners from neglecting their animals and send a strong message that if you are caught, you will be dealt with.”

Sentencing: 12 month community order involving 120 hours of unpaid work; total of £485 costs and charges.

Surrey Police
Eagle Radio

Chapel Allerton, Leeds: Robert Michael Hunter

#TheList Robert Michael Hunter, born c. 1984, of Scott Hall Road, Chapel Allerton, Leeds LS7 – banned from keeping equines after his pony was found severely exhausted and dehydrated at Appleby Horse Fair

Horse trader Robert Michael Hunter from Leeds allowed this pony to become very poorly while in attendance at Appleby Horse Fair.

RSPCA inspectors intervened after the cob gelding was seen breathing heavily and dripping with sweat on June 6 2018, and struggling badly again the following day.

Only after negotiation and police intervention did owner Robert Michael Hunter allow his animal to be examined by a vet.

She found the animal to be severely exhausted, dehydrated and with a dangerously raised heart rate.

The vet went on to say that without veterinary treatment the horse would have been at serious risk of collapse and, subsequently, death due to the severity of exhaustion seen.

The horse was treated and has since made a full recovery.

H orse trader Hunterwas prosecuted and initially denied three charges. But ahead of trial he admitted two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal both by overworking the pony and failing to provide him with routine dentistry for the previous six months.

He also admitted failing to ensure the horse’s worming and dentistry needs were met during a two-year period up to June 2018.

Hunter, a married father-of four and “experienced horseman”, said of the family pet: “I would never ever cause that horse any unnecessary suffering that I’d have known of”.

But, jailing him for 90 days, District Judge Gerald Chalk said: “Put simply, that horse had been severely overworked and was suffering from dehydration.

“That, in my view, is either deliberate ill treatment or neglect by you, and a high level of suffering was caused to that animal.”

Sentencing: jailed for 90 days. Banned from owning or keeping any equine animals for six years.

Heart FM News
BBC News

Chichester, West Sussex: John Henry Brazil

#TheList Gypsy John Henry Brazil, born 24/06/1998, of The Hawthornes, Clayton Lane, Chichester PO20 8JQ – failed to look after a bay mare

Convicted animal abuser John Henry Brazil, is banned from keeping horses for three years

Brazil admitted causing unnecessary suffering by failing to address the cause of the horse’s “poor bodily condition”.

Sentencing:
160 hours of unpaid work; 20 rehabilitation sessions; total of £385 in costs and charges. Banned from keeping horses for three years.

The Argus

Shirenewton, Cardiff: Tony Israel Price

#TheList Tony Israel Price, born c. 1962, of 6 Shirenewton Caravan Site, Wentloog Road, Cardiff CF3 2EE – neglected three ponies

One of the three piebald mares left to suffer by her gypsy owner Tony Price

Gypsy traveller Tony Israel Price was found guilty of three horse cruelty offences after failing to take advice from the RSPCA about their care.

In July 2018 RSPCA inspectors Christine McNeil and Simon Evans attended a field off Redway Road, Bonvilston and found 13 horses with “very poor grazing” with ragwort present, and one mare in particular in “very poor condition”.

“During this visit a vet examination was carried out and advice was passed onto the owner as well as a warning notice issued for the poor body condition of the mare,” said inspector McNeil.

“We then re-visited in August and I attended with chief inspector Elaine Spence and the mare’s condition had deteriorated. A vet on site was of the opinion that she was suffering and the two other mares did not have their needs met and would be likely to suffer if their circumstances did not change.

“Sadly our advice had not been taken on board and we had to take action. Further advice was also issued for the remaining horses at the location.”

The three piebald mares were signed over to the charity and will be made available for rehoming.

Sentencing: 18-month conditional discharge; £1,000 costs and a victim surcharge.

Horse & Hound

Fareham, Hampshire: James Goddard

#TheList: gypsy traveller James ‘Jimmy’ Goddard, born 06/06/1991, of 1 Mayles Close, Fareham PO17 5NF – beat a cockerel to death with a metal skewer as others filmed him

Filth: Gypsy Jimmy Goddard from Fareham was filmed by others beating a helpless cockerel to death with a metal skewer
Filth: Gypsy Jimmy Goddard from Fareham was filmed by others beating a helpless cockerel to death with a metal skewer

In a horrendous attack against a defenceless animal, Goddard chased the cockerel around a fenced area with a metal kebab skewer. As the cockerel attempts to run away, Goddard lunges at him, picks him up and beats him to death. As the bird dies Goddard celebrates with his arms in the air.

Police uncovered the video while carrying out a separate investigation.

Convicted animal abuser: gypsy Jimmy Goddard
A scan of convicted animal abuser Jimmy Goddard’s Facebook profile shows that his cruelty towards a helpless cockerel was not a one-off.

RSPCA Chief Inspector Will Mitchell described the violent footage: ‘Mr Goddard chases the bird around taking swipes with the 3ft-long metal skewer like a baseball bat.

‘He then grabs hold of the cockerel, holds him upside down by his feet and, while the bird frantically flaps around and tries to escape his clutches, he beats his head with the pole.

‘He swings at the poor bird again and again, hitting him in the head like a pinata.

‘He then throws the bird’s body onto the ground and celebrates the vicious kill.

‘It’s absolutely shocking to watch. His violent behaviour and the savage cruelty he shows towards this bird is difficult to comprehend.”

Sergeant Andy Williams from Hampshire Constabulary’s Country Watch team said: ‘We are pleased that Goddard has finally been punished for what really was a shocking and cowardly act against the animal.

‘We work closely with our partners from the RSPCA on a variety of rural and animal welfare matters.

‘Offences such as this have no place in modern society. When information is received about such offences, the Country Watch team is only too pleased to assist in investigating them and bringing offenders to justice.’

Sentencing: 18-week custodial sentence; total of £865 costs and charges. Banned from keeping any animal for five years.

The News
The London Economic

Sunderland: Glenn A Foot

#TheList Glenn Foot, born 05/11/1987, of 42 Marley Crescent, Sunderland SR5 5BL – left his horse to suffer with a maggot infested wound

Failing boxer Glenn Foot left his defenceless horse tethered and suffering an infected wound

The RSPCA found skewbald stallion Raspy tethered on land near Wembley Road in Sunderland. Owner Glenn Foot was called to the scene, but refused to answer questions.

Police were called to supervise Raspy’s removal, but before a trailer could be loaded, Foot put his 12-year-old nephew on Raspy’s back and fled the scene.

Stewart Haywood, prosecuting on behalf of the RSPCA, said tethering Raspy was against welfare guidelines.

“In cases that a horse can be tethered, a broad leather collar should be used with a 360 degree swivel,” said Mr Haywood.

“The horse should also not be tethered near rights of way – there was a public path nearby – and the horse should be inspected at least once every six hours.

“Raspy had two nylon collars, one of which had caused the wound which became infected.

“A vet estimated the wound to be between two and five days old, “There were maggots and fly larvae in the wound.

“The RSPCA say the horse was subject to a prolonged period of neglect.”

The court heard Raspy and Foot were traced for a second time following a press appeal. Raspy’s injuries had healed by then, and Foot was allowed to keep him.

One of life’s failures: Convicted horse abuser Glenn Foot isn’t much cop as a boxer either

Foot was convicted of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal, and f obstructing an RSPCA inspector in the execution of her duty, both on August 29, 2018.

Both convictions were in his absence after he failed to turn up for his trial.

Geoffrey Forrester, defending, said: “Mr Foot has dedicated much of his life to boxing.

“At the time of this offending he was preparing for a very important fight which would, had be won, led to great exposure and a remunerative contract with a promoter.

“He had been to a press conference to promote the fight on the day he was called to deal with Raspy.

“Unfortunately, the fight was lost, as were the associated opportunities.

“On the day he fled with the horse, he just panicked.

“The vet says the injuries to Raspy may have been only two days old. That is unpleasant, but it’s not a prolonged period of time.

“This is not a case of a man who leaves a horse to fend for itself for weeks or months at a time.”

Sentencing: 18-month community order; 300 hours of unpaid work; £455 costs. Banned from keeping equine animals for five years. The bench gave the RSPCA the power to seize Raspy if Foot still has him.

Sunderland Echo

Badger Baiters from Doncaster, Bridlington and Hull

#TheList Andrew Booth, born c. 1974, of West Road, Moorends, Doncaster; George Horner, born c. 1992, of 30 Brett Street, Bridlington; John Horner, born c. 1999, of 77 Constable Road, Bridlington; Kirk McGarry, born c. 1968, of Southfield Road, Thorne, Doncaster; Richard Willey, born c. 1972, of Westlands Road, Hull – used dogs to attack a badger sett

Cruel badger baiters Andrew Booth, Kirk McGarry, John Horner, George Horner and Richard Willey and terrier Paddy who suffered serious facial injuries

Andrew Booth, Kirk McGarry, John Horner, George Horner and Richard Willey used two dogs, one of whom was heavily pregnant, to attack a badger sett.

They were each found guilty of wildlife and animal cruelty offences at Beverley Magistrates’ Court.

Badger baiter John Horner from Bridlington
The youngest of the five convicted men: John-Joe Horner
Badger baiter Richard Willey from Hull
Richard Willey

On the afternoon of 30 December 2017 a concerned member of the public reported to the police that five men with dogs were digging into a badger sett at Melton in the East Riding of Yorkshire.

Badger baiter George Horner from Bridlington
George Horner is a failed professional boxer

A number of officers including several wildlife crime officers quickly attended the location and found four men continuing to dig into what appeared to the officers to be an active badger sett.

Jess and Charlotte were found at the scene

Four terrier-type dogs were seized at the time of the incident. One dog, Paddy, was seriously injured and was lucky to survive. A second dog, Dizzy, was heavily pregnant when she was seized and gave birth to a puppy, named Romeo, who is now one year old. Two other dogs, Charlotte and Jess, were also seized. All five dogs have been kennelled and have responded well to the care and attention they have received.

Paddy nearly died from his injuries, which were consistent with badger fighting

Ch Insp Iain Dixon said: “Badger digging is a cruel and barbaric activity and involves horrendous suffering to both the badger and any dog involved.

“In this particular case one dog, named Dizzy, was very far into pregnancy, giving birth within a few weeks of the incident which shows the uncaring and callous nature of those involved all the more.”

Sentencing: the five men were sentenced to a maximum term of six months in prison. They have each also received three year Criminal Behaviour Orders (CBOs) and were told to pay £2,000 costs for dog kennelling and vet’s fees. All are banned from keeping animals for 10 years.

BBC News

Bury, Greater Manchester: Kirsty Hamilton

#TheList Kirsty Hamilton, born c. 1984, of 15 Martin Street, Bury BL9 7SF – left an emaciated Arab mare with a severe hoof infection

Neglected Arab mare Blossom and her cruel former owner Kirsty Hamilton from Bury.
Neglected Arab mare Blossom and her cruel former owner Kirsty Hamilton from Bury.

Hamilton pleaded guilty to four counts of failing to meet the needs of Arab mare Blossom, under the Animal Welfare Act 2006.

The RSPCA was contacted by a member of the public who was concerned about Blossom, kept at stables at Nook Farm, Nook Lane, Tyldesely, Astley. On investigating, the mare’s bodyweight was rated one, the lowest on a scale of one to nine, and a vet found she had a bad case of thrush in all her hooves.

Inspector Danni Jennings, said: “The horse was clearly in an emaciated state and had other problems which had not been dealt with such as overgrown teeth.

“The infection in her hooves was awful and was caused by her standing in faeces in a dark and damp stable block for a long period of time.”

Kirsty Hamilton with boyfriend Joe Cannon. Cannon is from a notorious family of travellers.
Kirsty Hamilton with boyfriend Joe Cannon. Cannon is from a notorious family of travellers, who deal in horses and also raffle them on social media.

In mitigation the court heard that Hamilton had personal problems and was pregnant.

Blossom was taken for treatment and is now in the care of the charity.

Sentencing: 12-month community order; curfew order; total of £1,585 costs and charges. Banned from keeping equines for just one year.

Leigh Journal

Bridgwater, Somerset: Martin Veysey

#TheList Martin Veysey, born c. 1955, of 6 Albert Court, Albert Street, Bridgwater, Somerset TA6 7ET – breached a previous life ban on keeping animals imposed on him in 2011

Veysey pleaded guilty to six charges under the Animal Welfare Act and the Cattle Identification Regulations on Tuesday, December 18, 2018 at Taunton Crown Court.

Veysey was banned for life from keeping animals in 2011 after he was prosecuted for causing unnecessary suffering and failing to provide appropriate care for his animals.

The latest prosecution was brought by Devon, Somerset and Torbay Trading Standards Service and related to the purchase, transport and ownership of cattle obtained from markets in the South West.

Charges also related to a pony and an American bulldog owned by Veysey.

Veysey was also found guilty for failing to report and record the movements of cattle and failing to surrender the passports of cattle to Defra’s British Cattle Movement Service.

The court heard that the prosecution followed an investigation by Trading Standards officers.

Officers gathered intelligence from several sources including from members of the public, who responded to adverts he had placed to sell animals, as well as the RSPCA, livestock auctioneers and landowners who had witnessed his involvement with animals.

In sentencing Veysey, the judge told him that ‘the legislation is intended to protect animals from cowboys like you’ and warned him any further breaches would mean that he would go to prison.

Sentencing: eight-month prison sentence suspended for two years. Costs of £2,115.

BridgwaterMercury

Skipton, North Yorkshire: James Featon

#TheList puppy dealer James Featon, born c. 1968, of Roughaw Road, Skipton BD23 – kept 23 dogs in poor conditions at a Selby pig farm

Puppy dealer James Featon and some of the puppies rescued from the pig farm where he kept them.

Gypsy traveller Featon pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to dogs after two adult dogs and 21 puppies were found in “disgusting conditions” in pig pens on a farm in North Duffield, near Selby.

Photo of cruel puppy dealer James Featon
Cruel puppy dealer James Featon.

RSPCA officers and North Yorkshire Police visited the farm on 7 October 2017 where the dogs were found living in pig pens.

Cruel puppy dealer James Featon also enjoys hunting with dogs. Photo shows him with a dog and dead rabbit.
When not exploiting dogs for money, James Featon enjoys persecuting wildlife.

The animals were taken into immediate veterinary care. Sadly, only 18 of the dogs survived.

RSPCA Inspector Alice Cooper, who led the investigation, said:

“Some of the puppies were in very poor condition; thin and lethargic with swollen, distended abdomens.

“Three Jack Russell terrier puppies had collapsed.

“Police seized all of the dogs and we rushed them to the vets where a number of the pups were diagnosed with parvovirus – a highly contagious and potentially fatal disease.

“They were all hospitalised and needed intensive veterinary treatment but, unfortunately, we lost four because they were so incredibly poorly.”

Eighteen dogs – including spaniels, lurchers and crossbreeds – pulled through and were taken in by RSPCA centres while the investigation was ongoing.

Adult dog found at James Featon's puppy farm
Adult dog found at James Featon's puppy farm

Inspector Cooper added: “Our investigations established that Mr Featon was buying in dogs from Ireland and elsewhere in England, and then selling them on to the public.

“However, he was keeping the dogs in disgusting conditions and had categorically failed to provide veterinary care to those that had fallen ill.”

PC Sarah Ward of North Yorkshire Police said: “I’m very pleased with the result and thankful that we found the puppies when we did, saving them from more suffering.

“They were kept in cold, damp conditions without their mums and most of them were very ill with a number needing urgent veterinary attention.

“Sadly, some did not make it.

“We urge members of the public to only ever buy puppies from reputable dog breeders or adopt a rescue dog from a known charity.”

The dogs – which have all been in RSPCA care during the investigation – were signed over this week and can now be rehomed.
They will be available after Christmas.

Inspector Cooper added: “Unfortunately this sort of thing is something we see all too often at the RSPCA.

“Breeding and selling puppies is big business and with certain breeds selling for hundreds if not thousands of pounds there are a lot of people trying to cash in.

“Sadly, some sellers like Mr Featon will put profits ahead of the health and welfare of the dogs.

“This is completely unacceptable.

Sentencing: total of £460 in fines, costs and charges. Disqualified from dealing in dogs, meaning he can own dogs as pets but isn’t to be involved in commercial activity involving dogs.

StrayFM
Northern Echo