Tag Archives: Lincolnshire

Gainsborough, Lincolnshire: Ryan Smith

#TheList badger baiter Ryan Michael Smith, born c. 1993, of Noel Street, Gainsborough DN21 2RY

Badger baiter Ryan Michael Smith from Gainsborough
Badger baiter Ryan Michael Smith from Gainsborough

Smith, who has previous convictions for violence and spent time in prison, pleaded guilty to interfering with a badger sett and attempting to kill a badger when he appeared before Mansfield Magistrates’ Court.

The court heard how Smith was among three people who were spotted by a gamekeeper on land near Beckingham, Nottinghamshire.

Accomplices Dale Shields and Murphy Thorne were sentenced separately.

The gamekeeper suspected the trio were badger baiting – which is where a dog is sent into a sett to flush out the badger and attack it for the handler to then dig the badger out and kill it or take it away for it to be killed at a later date.

Police were alerted and Shields and Thorne were arrested close to the scene. Smith was arrested by police on the same day away from badger sett. He initially denied the offences but changed his plea ahead of a trial.

Officers found a six-foot hole had been dug into the badger sett and there were spades nearby. A net which is often used to capture badgers was also found.

Two dogs, wearing radio collars, were also seized and were taken to a nearby vets in Retford for treatment as they had facial and dental injuries. One dog was in a collapsed state at the scene due to exhaustion.

The RSPCA were alerted to the incident and inspector Keith Ellis began an investigation.

He called the help of an expert badger witness who said the badger sett was active and had been disturbed. No dead badger was recovered but Inspector Ellis said it is possible the badger had died in the sett.

A veterinary expert who examined both Patterdale Terriers said the facial wounds were consistent with them been involved in a fight with another animal of a similar size and stature.

Inspector Ellis said: “The gamekeeper said he could see the men jump into a six-foot hole which they had dug down into the badger sett so he called the police.

“When they attended the scene it was clear that the sett had been interfered with and there were spades nearby.

“The dogs were wearing radio-collars which are used so the owners can locate where they are underground and when the dogs locate the badger the handlers dig down and usually kill the badger.”

In mitigation, Smith said he had ‘tagged along with the other two’.

The forfeiture of the dogs into RSPCA care was ordered and both are doing well. They are due to be re-homed soon.

Sentencing: 18-week jail sentence suspended for two months; ordered to pay £415. Deprivation order on his dogs. Banned from keeping dogs for five years.

Gainsborough Standard

Gainsborough, Lincolnshire: Murphy Thorne and Dale Shields

#The List badger baiters Murphy James Ian Thorne, born 16/04/1997 of 5 Grey Street, Gainsborough DN21 2PS and Dale Shields, born 13/03/1997 of 3 Laburnum Avenue, Gainsborough DN21 1ET

Badger baiters Dale Shields (top right) and Murphy Thorne of Gainsborough and one of their injured dogs.
Badger baiters Dale Shields (top right) and Murphy Thorne of Gainsborough and one of their injured dogs.

Gainsborough men Murphy Thorne and Dale Shields pleaded guilty to interfering with a badger sett and attempting to kill a badger, when they appeared at Mansfield Magistrates’ Court.

The court heard how the pair were among three people who were spotted by a gamekeeper on land near Beckingham, Nottinghamshire, on Sunday, April 7, 2019 at 3pm.

Badger baiter Dale Shields from Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, UK.
Badger baiter Dale Shields from Gainsborough.

The gamekeeper suspected they were badger baiting – which is where a dog is sent into a sett to flush out the badger and attack it for the handler to then dig the badger out and kill it or take it away for it to be killed at a later date.

He alerted the police who arrested Thorne and Shields close to the scene and the court heard how Thorne told police: “I don’t get paid for doing it, but do it as a sport and it is something I enjoy”.

A six-foot hole had been dug into the badger sett and both men had spades. They also had a net which is often used to capture badgers.

Badger baiter Murphy Thorne from Gainsborough, Lincolnshire UK
Badger baiter Murphy Thorne

Two dogs, wearing radio collars, were also seized from the men by police and were taken to a nearby vets in Retford for treatment as they had facial and dental injuries. One dog was in a collapsed state at the scene due to exhaustion.

The RSPCA were alerted to the incident and inspector Keith Ellis began an investigation.

He called the help of an expert badger witness who said the badger sett was active and had been disturbed. No dead badger was recovered but Inspector Ellis said it is possible the badger had died in the sett.

A veterinary expert who examined both Patterdale Terriers said the facial wounds were consistent with them been involved in a fight with another animal of a similar size and stature.

Badger baiter Dale Shields from Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, UK.
Badger baiter Dale Shields

Inspector Ellis said: “The gamekeeper said he could see the men jump into a six-foot hole which they had dug down into the badger sett so he called the police.

“When they attended the scene it was clear that the sett had been interfered with and there were spades nearby.

“The dogs were wearing radio-collars which are used so the owners can locate where they are underground and when the dogs locate the badger the handlers dig down and usually kill the badger.”

A third man, who was arrested by police on the same day, denied the offences and his trial will take place at a later date.

The forfeiture of the dogs to the RSPCA was ordered and the animal charity will re-home them.

Sentencing: 18-week jail sentence suspended for 12 months; ordered to each pay costs and charges totalling £415. Five-year ban on keeping dogs.

Gainsborough Standard

South Killingholme, Lincolnshire: Jodie and Paul Fairbrother

#TheList for multiple cruelty charges Jodie Annabel Fairbrother (aka Jodie Lewis), born 30/09/1978, and husband Paul Jack Fairbrother, born 10/07/1969, formerly of Immingham, Lincolnshire, but now said to be living in Nar Fokak, Cyprus, with daughter Libby-Jo Fairbrother who was also initially charged.

Former owners of Lincolnshire animal shelter 4Paws Jodie and Paul Fairbrother are banned from keeping animals for just 5 years.
Jodie Fairbrother ran the 4Paws boarding kennels and veterinary clinic in South Killingholme, North Lincolnshire, for three years, while husband Paul Fairbrother carried out maintenance

Mother-of-four Jodie Fairbrother, whose last known UK address was Aberdovey Drive, Eaglescliffe, Stockton-on-Tees TS16 9EZ admitted 10 offences of animal cruelty at 4Paws veterinary clinic – six which related to causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal.

Former owners of Lincolnshire animal shelter 4Paws Jodie and Paul Fairbrother kept animals in squalor
The Fairbrothers kept dogs, cats and horses in filthy and overcrowded conditions.

Her husband, Paul Fairbrother, admitted three offences of animal cruelty, including one charge of causing unnecessary suffering to a British bulldog and two charges relating to animal welfare.

Former owners of Lincolnshire animal shelter 4Paws Jodie and Paul Fairbrother are banned from keeping animals for just 5 years.
Jodie and Paul Fairbrother are now living in Cyprus

The charges were brought by the RSPCA after it conducted one of its largest raids in March 2018 at 4Paws in Killingholme, North Lincolnshire.

Former owners of Lincolnshire animal shelter 4Paws Jodie and Paul Fairbrother kept animals in squalor
One of the 144 dogs rescued during a raid on 4Paws in March 2018.

More than 60 staff from multiple agencies worked throughout the day to remove 160 animals.

4Paws, which imported 4,600 dogs from overseas over a 15-month period, operated an unlicensed boarding kennels and veterinary clinic after their licence expired.

The animals were found in “abhorrent” conditions.

Some animals were left unattended in baskets and cages for up to 95 hours. Many were kept in cramped kennels with no access to food or water.

They also had untreated health conditions such as respiratory problems or ear infections and untreated wounds.

The body of a deceased dog was found at the clinic and it was later discovered the dog had distemper, a lethal viral disease.

One dog was kept in a cage for four days without food and water and then ‘euthanised’ by Fairbrother, who had no veterinary qualifications.

Three dogs had to be put to sleep and two had Brucella canisa, a serious contagious disease that can be passed onto humans. Another tested positive for distemper.

A total of 144 dogs and 16 cats were then taken in by the RSPCA and Dogs Trust.

Libby-Jo Fairbrother, daughter of   convicted animal abusers Jodie and Paul Fairbrother, escaped prosecution.
Libby-Jo Fairbrother

Other charges against the Fairbrothers were dropped at an earlier hearing and all 17 charges were dropped against daughter Libby-Jo Fairbrother.

A former volunteer at 4Paws told the local newspaper about the horrors she had witnessed during her time there. She described how animals at the veterinary clinic were kept in “disgusting” conditions, with 10 to 15 dogs being kept in any one kennel.

Former owners of Lincolnshire animal shelter 4Paws Jodie and Paul Fairbrother kept animals in squalor
Many of the animals were sick or injured and left untreated by Jodie Fairbrother.

The volunteer also said that the animals had been “living in their own filth” as the kennels were never cleaned properly, and the animals were never looked after, with around 80 new dogs arriving at the kennel every week.

They said: “I used to help out at the clinic and some of the things that I have seen were just disgusting.

“There were 10 to 15 dogs all into one pen, and just roaming about. There was not one bed for a dog.

“Thursday is delivery day, when they get usually around three vans full of dogs from Romania brought to the site. But the most horrible thing is to see them left outside the clinic, sometimes for over a day, just sitting in those vans howling.

“The animals are always getting out and running loose about the place.”

Former owners of Lincolnshire animal shelter 4Paws Jodie and Paul Fairbrother kept animals in squalor

Other local residents hit out at the treatment of horses at the centre, saying they had been left in a field during the heat of the summer without food or water. Residents said they had intervened to feed the animals themselves claiming that clinic staff had informed them they were “too busy”.

Numerous other residents alleged that after speaking out about the conditions at 4Paws, they received threats.

Sentencing: Jodie Fairbrother – jailed for 18 weeks, suspended for 12 months. Paul Fairbrother – jailed for 12 weeks, suspended for 12 months. Both were ordered to pay £500 costs and a £115 victim surcharge each. Both were banned from keeping or trading in animals for five years.

BBC News
DerbyshireLive


South Herefordshire Hunt: Paul Oliver, Hannah Rose, Paul Reece and Julie Elmore

#TheList Paul Oliver, born c. 1978, and Hannah Rose, born c. 1988, both of Sutton Crosses, Long Sutton, Spalding PE12, Paul Reece, born c. 1970, of Grove View, Usk Road, Chepstow NP16 6SA and Julie Elmore, born c. 1963, of 6 Brynarw Estate, Abergavenny NP7 7ND – convicted of animal cruelty after fox cubs were fed to hounds

Fox cub killers Paul Oliver, Hannah Rose, Paul Reece and Julie Elmore - all involved with now defunct South Herefordshire Hunt
Fox cub killers Paul Oliver, Paul Reece, Hannah Rose and Julie Elmore

Footage obtained by a group called the Hunt Investigation Team (HIT) was instrumental in the successful prosecution of Paul Oliver, master of hounds with the now disbanded South Herefordshire Hunt.

South Herefordshire Hunt cruelty case. Fox cub killer Paul Oliver, former huntsman with the now defunct hunt.
Disgraced Master and Huntsman of the now defunct South Herefordshire Hunt, Paul Oliver

Oliver was convicted of four counts of animal cruelty for allowing his hounds to kill four fox cubs and was handed a 16-week suspended jail sentence for causing their “painful, terrifying” deaths.

District Judge Joanna Dickens, sitting at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court, also imposed a 12-week suspended sentence on Oliver’s partner, Hannah Rose, the hunt’s kennel maid.

South Herefordshire Hunt kennel maid Hannah Rose pictured outside court
South Herefordshire Hunt kennel maid Hannah Rose pictured outside court

The pair were ordered to pay £300 in costs and a £115 victim surcharge after being convicted of causing unnecessary suffering.

South Herefordshire Hunt cruelty case. Hannah Rose and Paul Oliver pictured outside court.
Hannah Rose and Paul Oliver pictured outside court.

HIT, a relatively new group whose members include ex-services personnel, received training in covert investigative methods.

They fixed a device to Oliver’s Land Rover following a tip-off and tracked him to a site where they suspected he was catching fox cubs in May 2016.

They also set up cameras at the hunt’s kennels and obtained footage they said proved Oliver was catching cubs and taking them back to his hounds to “blood” them.

South Herefordshire Hunt cruelty case. Paul Oliver was filmed taking live fox cubs  from a crate into a kennel block. A short time later he was captured disposing of the cubs' mutilated bodies.
Paul Oliver was filmed taking live fox cubs from a crate into a kennel block at the South Herefordshire Hunt. A short time later he was captured disposing of the cubs’ mutilated bodies.
South Herefordshire Hunt cruelty case. Paul Oliver's girlfriend Hannah Rose looks on as he  handles the fox cubs.  Photo credit: Hunt Investigation Team.
Paul Oliver’s girlfriend Hannah Rose looks on as he handles the fox cubs. Photo credit: Hunt Investigation Team.

The court heard that one camera recorded Oliver dumping the bodies of two cubs in a wheelie bin.

The activists are said to have taken legal advice from lawyers and animal welfare organisations who told them they could not recover the cubs as this would amount to theft.

They said they did not pass the case to the police because they did not believe officers would have the resources to follow it up.

HIT members, who are involved in several ongoing investigations, are so worried about reprisals that one was allowed to give evidence during the seven-day trial from behind a screen.

Fox cub killers Julie Elmore and Paul Reece
Terrierman Paul Reece was filmed delivering a fox cub to the crate. Nathan Parry, who unbelievably was acquitted, was also present along with his girlfriend Julie Elmore (pictured)

Julie Elmore and Paul Reece admitted two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to cubs which were distressed by being transported to the kennels.

Elmore and Reece were given conditional discharges and ordered to pay costs of £50 after the judge said both had been “motivated by consideration” for two fox cubs.

A fifth defendant, Nathan Parry, born c. 1978, also of Brynarw estate, was cleared of all charges.

Acquitted of any involvement in live fox cubs being fed to hounds: Nathan Parry
Unbelievably Nathan Parry was acquitted with judges believing his implausible account

Parry took foxes to kennels but was found not guilty after the judge accepted he believed they would be relocated in the wild.

Martin Sims, director of investigations at the League Against Cruel Sports and former head of the police’s National Wildlife Crime Unit, said: “We believe the incidents show that hunts are clearly still hunting as the poor fox cubs were thrown into the kennels to give the hounds a taste for blood.

“The barbarity of these incidents is sickening and will horrify the vast majority of the British public who are overwhelmingly opposed to fox hunting.”

Deborah Marshall, HIT spokeswoman, said: “This case has taken far too long to come to court and we have faced false allegations against investigators and obstruction throughout. We are glad that justice has finally taken its course.

“The capture of fox cubs to be used to train hounds is nothing new and is widespread across Britain, as is the mass destruction of healthy hounds to make way for younger ones. We will continue to expose cruelty and wildlife crime.”

The Masters of Foxhounds Association suspended the South Herefordshire Hunt after the footage emerged and it has since disbanded.

A spokesperson for the association said Oliver’s actions were “completely disgraceful” and had no place in hunting.

Telegraph

Spalding, Lincolnshire: Sian Williamson

#TheList Sian Williamson, age unknown, of Redthorne Close, Spalding PE11 2LP – kept two dogs in appalling conditions; one dog extremely emaciated when rescued

Dog abuser Sian Williamson of Spalding was let off with an RSPCA caution, which will only remain on file for 3 years.
Despite evidence of animal neglect and cruelty Sian Williamson of Spalding was let off with an RSPCA caution, which will only remain on file for 3 years.

The dogs – Staffy Molly and Sharpei cross Mika – were rescued in February 2019 by Staffordshire Bull Terrier Rescue, who were alerted by a local dog warden.

Emaciated Molly was being kept in grim conditions by her callous owner Sian Williamson of Spalding
Emaciated Molly was being kept in grim conditions by her callous owner Sian Williamson

Rescuers found the dogs in a desperate state in the back garden, with their owner, mother-of-two Sian Williamson, nowhere to be seen.

Neglected dogs Molly and Mika

Eventually she returned and the rescuers asked why her dogs were in such poor condition. Williamson responded that she had no money but was carrying a takeaway for her and her kids.

Neglected dog Molly

Williamson agreed to sign the dogs over to the rescue, who then alerted the RSPCA.

Dog abuser Sian Williamson of Spalding was let off with an RSPCA caution, which will only remain on file for 3 years.

The RSPCA took some photos and asked for a copy of the vet report but decided to let Williamson off with a caution, which will remain on her file for three years.

Molly, victim of dog abuser Sian Williamson

Williamson has a large collection of exotic pets including snakes and other reptiles. Since she was never formally prosecuted, there is nothing to stop her continuing to acquire more animals.

Animal abuser Sian Williamson from Spalding, Lincolnshire
Animal abuser Sian Williamson
No words needed …
Victims of dog abuser Sian Williamson of Spalding.
The dogs have recovered from their ordeal.

Molly recovered well in the care of Staffordshire Bull Terrier Rescue, who continue to post regular updates on her progress. Sharpei cross Mika who was far less emaciated than Molly, was sent to another rescue due to her breed but is also doing well. She had to have an operation for an eye condition known as entropion, which Williamson had failed to treat.

SBT’s post on the dogs’ rescue

Sleaford, Lincolnshire: Kimberleigh Steele

#TheList Kimberleigh Joanne Steele (aka Kim Donaghy), born 24/02/1989, currently of Castleland, Tulsk, County Roscommon, Ireland, and previously of 19 Polyanthus Drive, Sleaford and with links to Plymouth, Devon – bred dogs for fighting

Dog fighting ring member Kimberleigh Steele pictured outside court. Photo also shows Baddy, a victim of the pair's cruelty. The dog is believed to have died from his injuries, but his body has never been found.

Dog fighting ring member Kimberleigh Steele pictured outside court. Photo also shows Baddy, a victim of the pair’s cruelty. The dog is believed to have died from his injuries, but his body has never been found.

Steele was part of a dog fighting ring which was headed up by her partner, John Herbert Knibbs.

Steele's partner in life and in animal crime John Knibbs remains at large
Steele’s partner in life and in animal crime John Knibbs remains at large

Knibbs has failed to attend numerous hearings and a warrant is out for his arrest after he was convicted of dog fighting, ear cropping and causing unnecessary suffering.

Steele travelled from Ireland for a trial at Lincoln Magistrates Court on Monday, 8 April 2019.

Following her five-year disqualification order Steele will have to give up ownership of two dogs and a horse she keeps in Ireland

Before moving to Ireland Steele lived in Sleaford with Knibbs and has also stayed at two different addresses in Plymouth: Downfield Walk PL7 2DT and Durban Road PL3

In court she was sentenced for aiding and abetting Knibbs as well as possession of a banned pit bull terrier. The court also heard how she had ten animals in total, which were all used in a dog fighting ring. One has since died.

RSPCA prosecutor Hazel Stevens told the court: “At the time of the raid Steele claimed to own all of the dogs.

“We are looking after the dogs in kennels for £15,700 a year. Some are so dangerous they need to be darted before the staff can go inside.”

Sentencing Steele, the judge told her: “Your partner Knibbs has not attended court and is not that big of a man without his dogs.

“The custody threshold has passed but I am going to suspend it because you have young children.”

Speaking after Steele’s sentencing RSPCA Inspector Kirsty Withnall said : “It is a shame that Knibbs wasn’t here today.

“We are pleased with the district judge’s comments and the sentence he’s handed down. Knibbs isn’t bold enough to be here, we hope he will be sentenced soon.”

Sentencing: suspended custodial sentence of 16 weeks; £615 in fines. Banned from keeping animals for a paltry five years.

Lincolnshire Reporter
Lincolnshire Live
Grantham Journal

Previous:

https://thecrueltylistuk.com/dog-fighting-ring-based-in-lincolnshire-and-north-wales-john-knibbs-stephen-gardner-adam-scott-kim-steele/

Grimsby, North East Lincolnshire: Christopher Bloy and Heather Wray

#TheList Christopher Bloy, born c. 1992, and partner Heather Wray, born c. 1993, both of Patrick Street, Grimsby DN32 – banned from keeping animals after their extremely malnourished German Shepherd had to be put down

German Shepherd Cassie had to be euthanised after becoming "extremely malnourished" when her cruel owners Christopher Bloy and Heather Wray failed to call in veterinary help
German Shepherd Cassie had to be euthanised after becoming “extremely malnourished” when her cruel owners Christopher Bloy and Heather Wray failed to call in veterinary help

Neglectful Christopher Bloy and mother-of-two Heather Wray admitted causing unnecessary suffering to German Shepherd Cassie by failing to investigate the cause of her poor body condition and weight loss.

German Shepherd Cassie had to be euthanised after becoming "extremely malnourished" when her cruel owners Christopher Bloy and Heather Wray failed to call in veterinary help

Cassie, who was no more than five years old, was rushed to the Blue Cross animal hospital but was put to sleep the same day.

Rachel Taylor, prosecuting for the RSPCA, told the court that the emaciated dog weighed only 12kg when the usual weight for a dog of her size and breed is between 30kg and 35kg.

“There was a real failure to investigate why this dog weighed such a low weight of 12kg when it was presented in such a condition that it had to be euthanised,” said Miss Taylor.

Ironically, there was another dog at the couple’s house but that one had a normal weight and had received food.

“Cassie was not receiving food,” said Miss Taylor. “Either the other dog was eating it or there was no food put down.

“The charge is failing to address the loss of weight rather than a deliberate act of cruelty.

“I can’t say that this is a deliberate case of failing to feed. Certainly, the dog was not sufficiently fed.”

German Shepherd Cassie had to be euthanised after becoming "extremely malnourished" when her cruel owners Christopher Bloy and Heather Wray failed to call in veterinary help. Bloy and Wray pictured outside court.

The prosecution did not accept that the dog had an underlying condition because the couple seemed to have been advised by a vet in 2016 that follow-up appointments would be needed. Her weight then was only 18kg.

These appointments were never kept, however, and attempts by the veterinary surgery to make contact were unsuccessful.

A post-mortem suggested that there was no underlying reason for the weight loss.

Craig Davy, mitigating, said the other dog was perfectly healthy but was treated in a similar way to Cassie and they claimed that the second dog might have taken some of Cassie’s food.

“They noticed the weight of Cassie declining in a period of a few weeks,” said Mr Davy.

“They should have done more over that period of time. Both were distressed by the fact that Cassie had to be put down.”

The court heard that Bloy claimed because he worked away 60 to 70 hours a week, he did not notice the dog had lost weight. She used to play around in the garden and the first time he realised there was a problem was when the dog collapsed.

Photo of Heather Wray. German Shepherd Cassie had to be euthanised after becoming "extremely malnourished" when her cruel owners Christopher Bloy and Heather Wray failed to call in veterinary help
Cruel dog abuser Heather Wray from Grimsby

Wray had owned Cassie since she was a puppy but two years ago, her behaviour changed and she started jumping at shadows and running around obsessively.

The pair said they sought help and tried to sort out the problems but the dog would not eat when she was watched.

Wray admitted that she should have sought advice a lot earlier and she regretted that.

A woman who was in court supporting the couple had offered to provide a new home for the other dog.

Photo of Heather Wray. German Shepherd Cassie had to be euthanised after becoming "extremely malnourished" when her cruel owners Christopher Bloy and Heather Wray failed to call in veterinary help
Heather Wray had owned Cassie since she was a puppy

District judge Daniel Curtis told the couple: “Unfortunately, through your neglect, this dog had to be euthanised on the day that it appeared in front of a veterinary surgeon, who took the view, having examined it, that it was extremely malnourished and had been neglected.

“During that period, you did not do enough to save that dog. You should have looked after it. It’s an obligation that you have.

“The dog was emaciated in 2016. It was even worse when you presented it at the vet’s in 2018.”

The RSPCA will decide whether the supporter who was in court is a suitable person to have care of the other dog.

After the hearing, the woman was among angry supporters of Bloy and Wray who confronted a Grimsby Live photographer, hurling loud abuse and waving their arms around to try to prevent pictures of the defendants being taken as they left court.

Sentencing:
Bloy was given 80 hours’ unpaid work and Wray was given five days’ rehabilitation. Total of £585 costs and charges each. 10-year ban on keeping animals with no right of appeal for five years.

GrimsbyLive
Daily Mail

Grimsby, Lincolnshire: Susan and David Morris

#TheList David Morris, born c. 1968, and Susan Morris, born c. 1965, both of Southland Court, Grimsby DN37 9LL – left their flea-riddled Shih-Tzu dog to suffer with matted fur, skin and eye problems; dog later PTS

Susan and David Morris from Grimsby did nothing to treat the 'thousands and thousands' of fleas and badly-matted fur of Fifi their Shih-Tzu dog
Susan and David Morris from Grimsby did nothing to treat the ‘thousands and thousands’ of fleas and badly-matted fur of Fifi their Shih-Tzu dog

David and Susan Morris denied three offences of causing unnecessary suffering to the nine-year-old male dog, named Fifi, but were convicted after a trial.

Fifi was riddled with fleas and had badly matted fur as well as skin and eye problems.

The court heard that matting would have stopped him from being able to scratch properly and he would have been in a lot of pain. It was estimated that he had had fleas for two years.

The couple said they could not afford the cost of veterinary treatment so simply left the dog to suffer.

Neglected Shih-Tzu Fifi had many ailments including fleas, infected skin, a dry eye problem and badly matted fur

In a tragic twist, Fifi later had to be put down due to another problem.

Gordon Holt, prosecuting for the RSPCA, told Grimsby magistrates that an inspector visited the couple’s home on January 27, 2018, and examined Fifi.

Mr Holt said: “There was clear evidence that there was suffering to this animal and it had been going on for some time.”

Fifi was taken to the Blue Cross Animal Hospital in Grimsby , where a vet clipped him “from head to toe” to get rid of the matting.

“The vet believed Fifi had been caused unnecessary suffering,” said Mr Holt.

The vet said: “I have never seen a flea infection that was so bad. Fleas were visible on every part of his body.”

Sadly Fifi had to be put down last year following problems with his nervous system

Sadly, Fifi put down six months later because of a suspected central nervous problem.

David Morris later said of the dog: “I rescued him off the street. I have had him six or seven years.

“I feel we have rescued Fifi from certain death on the day I rescued him.

“I have not been cruel but possibly I have been stupid. I am bereft if my dog has suffered.”

Susan Morris claimed she did not notice the skin and eye conditions but bathed the dog sometimes for fleas.

Defence barrister Hywel Davies claimed: “There were no signs of discomfort or suffering. They were not to know.

“Nothing there warrants a trip to the vet’s.”

Convicted dog abusers Susan Morris and husband David Morris of Grimsby, Lincolnshire
Convicted dog abusers Susan Morris and husband David Morris of Grimsby, Lincolnshire

David Morris, a trained nurse, told the court that he found the stray dog on the streets.

Part of the reason he did not alert a vet was that he feared that Fifi would turn out to be microchipped and “would be taken back to that awful place” where he believed the dog had been cruelly treated.

He claimed that he did not see any eye or skin problems.

“I never noticed any problems,” he said.

“I didn’t think it was causing him any discomfort. It didn’t seem to bother him.

“We knew there were fleas. We must have used every flea shampoo, flea powder that was available.

“If a new flea product came out, we used it. It seemed to reduce them to some extent.

“He didn’t seem to be bothered by having them. He didn’t whine and didn’t scratch unduly.

“He just seemed a happy little dog.”

There was no cause for them to have concern about the dog suffering at any time.

“If he had, he would have been taken to a vet immediately,” claimed Morris.

“I didn’t think he was suffering in any way.”

Susan Morris told the court: “He was just fine. I used to give him baths.

“I saw a few fleas on him but I was treating it, sometimes two, three times a week. It got better.

“He was just like a normal dog. He wasn’t suffering at all.”

Sentencing:
David Morris: 12-month community order with 100 hours of unpaid work.
Susan Morris: electronic curfew for 20 weeks

Total of £335 costs and charges each
Both were banned indefinitely from keeping animals

Grimsby News

Horncastle, Lincolnshire: Vicki Ann Ball

#TheList Vicki Ann Ball, born 28/07/1981, of 31 Mark Avenue, Horncastle LN9 5BD – allowed her cockerpoo dog to become so poorly he had to be euthanised on welfare grounds; denied that the dog was hers and showed no remorse

Vicki Ann Ball from Horncastle and Ned, the cockerpoo she allowed to get into such a horrific condition he had to be immediately put to sleep
Callous Vicki Ann Ball from Horncastle and her cockerpoo Ned. The little dog had to be put to sleep on welfare grounds due to Ball’s appalling neglect of him

Vicki Ball pleaded guilty to one offence of causing unnecessary suffering to her black cockerpoo, named Ned, who was found by an examining vet to be in a collapsed state, with his coat matted with faeces and urine. His skin was covered in open wounds, which were infested with maggots.

The court heard that Ball took Ned to a dog rescue in June 2018 claiming that she had found the stricken dog on her lawn. The rescue took Ned to a vet who took the decision to put him to sleep immediately to end his suffering.

Dog killer Vicki Ball from Horncastle, Lincolnshire
Remorseless: Vicki Ball showed complete disregard for her dog’s welfare

During interview with the RSPCA, Ball said she had owned Ned in the past, but had given him away on Facebook ‘free to a good home’ in early 2018. She was unable to provide any evidence of this, however.

An RSPCA inspector visited Ball’s address and noticed a run at the side of the house that was being dismantled and had dog faeces in it.

A witness gave evidence that they had seen her with Ned recently and the dog was microchipped to her.

Abused cockerpoo Ned had multiple skin lesions, which were infested with maggots
Abused cockerpoo Ned had multiple skin lesions, which were infested with maggots

RSPCA Inspector Kate Burris said: “This was one of the most distressing cases I have dealt with because of the utter lack of any emotion or empathy displayed by the owner towards this dog.”

In mitigation, the court heard that Ball had pleaded guilty and had no previous convictions. It was said that she found Ned difficult to look after due to family commitments and his behaviour.

Sentencing
12-month community order with 120 hours of unpaid work. Fine and charges totalling £584. Disqualified from keeping animals for five years.

Lincolnshire Reporter
ITV News

Lincolnshire Pig Abusers: Gavin Hardy, Arturs Grigorjevs and Troy Wagstaff

#TheList Gavin Hardy , born 29/09/79, of 18 Greengate Lane, Immingham DN40 3EZ, Troy Wagstaff, born 06/03/88, of Willow Close, Ulceby DN39 6UR , and Arturs Grigorjevs, born c. 1986, of Oak Avenue, Goole DN14 – relentlessly abused pigs by kicking them in the face and jabbing them with pitchforks; caught on camera slamming a gate into an animal’s head

Trio responsible for horrific abuse of pigs at Fir Tree Farm in Goxhill, Lincolnshire
These three men regularly subjected defenceless pigs to “gratuitous, appalling and sickening” brutality

Hardy, Wagstaff and Grigorjevs, former employees of Goxhill’s Fir Tree Farm, which is operated by Elsham Linc, all admitted causing unnecessary suffering to pigs.

The case was brought by the RSPCA following an undercover investigation by animal rights group Animal Equality.

Hidden cameras were put inside the farm and these uncovered horrific footage of abuse.

The main culprit was Troy Wagstaff, a supervisor who, ironically, was actually the farm’s designated animal welfare manager responsible for animal welfare practice.

Trio responsible for horrific abuse of pigs at Fir Tree Farm in Goxhill, Lincolnshire
A severely scarred pig at Fir Tree Farm

Wagstaff admitted abusing numerous pigs between April 2 and April 27, 2018, by causing unnecessary suffering through inflicting blunt force trauma and physical violence.

He denied a second charge of abusing a pig by spraying paint into its nose. The prosecution offered no evidence on that matter.

Gavin Hardy, one of the trio responsible for horrific abuse of pigs at Fir Tree Farm in Goxhill, Lincolnshire.
Gavin Hardy

Gavin Hardy admitted causing unnecessary suffering to two pigs at the farm through inflicting blunt force trauma, physical violence and the inappropriate use of a pitchfork between April 25 and 27, 2018.

Arturs Grigorjevs, one of the trio responsible for horrific abuse of pigs at Fir Tree Farm in Goxhill, Lincolnshire.
Arturs Grigorjevs

Latvian national Arturs Grigorjevs admitted causing unnecessary suffering to four pigs through inflicting blunt force trauma, physical violence and the inappropriate use of a pitchfork,when knowing that the act was likely to have this effect.

Cameras were planted in Fir Tree Farm after suspicions that pigs were being ill-treated and these revealed pigs being subjected to horrific abuse.

The pigs’ squeals can be heard as they try to escape from the men around the pens.

Gordon Holt, prosecuting for the RSPCA, told Grimsby Magistrates’ Court that there was “repeated abuse and cruelty” to “multiple pigs”.

Wagstaff was the unit’s supervisor for nine months and had worked there since 2006.

He was the designated animal welfare manager and had monthly meetings with others about animal welfare practice.

Hardy was a stockman and had worked at the farm for about 20 years.

Grigorjevs had worked with pigs for about nine years.

Elsham Linc, which is owned by the Godfrey family, sacked the men after an investigation, saying the actions were “abhorrent behaviour that does not represent our business”.

Gavin Hardy, one of the trio responsible for horrific abuse of pigs at Fir Tree Farm in Goxhill, Lincolnshire.
A ticking time bomb? Gavin Hardy’s own solicitor admitted that his client was desensitised to animal suffering having worked on Godfreys’ pig farm for 20 years

Gavin Hardy had shown “no remorse”, his legal team said. His lawyers claimed he was ”desensitised” to the rearing and slaughtering of pigs after working at the farm for 20 years.

Wagstaff was described by his lawyers as “weak and foolish” but “full of remorse”.

Latvian national Arturs Grigorjevs, one of the trio responsible for horrific abuse of pigs at Fir Tree Farm in Goxhill, Lincolnshire.
Latvian Grigorjevs pictured outside court

The court heard Artis Grigorjevs recognised that his behaviour was unacceptable.

Sentencing:
The three were given an eight-week suspended prison sentence, 100 hours’ unpaid work and were banned from working with or transporting commercial livestock indefinitely. They must each pay £500 costs and a Government-imposed £115 victims’ surcharge.

Grimsby Telegraph