Tag Archives: Wales

Wales

West Wales: Sean Burns, Kenneth Evans and John Clayton

#TheList Sean Ronald Burns, born 15/08/1970, of Rosehill Lodge, Ferry Lane, Pembroke SA71 4RG, Kenneth Darren Evans, born 09/10/1975, of 28 Llys Caermedi, Carmarthen SA31 1GX, and John A Clayton (dob tbc) of 17 Rhos Las, Carmarthen SA31 2DY – convicted on charges relating to cruelty to animals at Bramble Hall Farm in Pembroke Dock and operation of an illegal slaughterhouse

Sean Burns (left) pictured outside court with his solicitor
Sean Burns (left) pictured outside court with his solicitor

Sean Burns was convicted of multiple cruelty charges in relation to 215 animals at Bramble Hall Farm, Ferry Lane, Pembroke Dock SA71 4RG.

The charges included the unlicensed breeding of dogs, welfare and animal-keeping regulation charges relating to sheep, horses, dogs, pigs, and goats.

A total of 53 pigs, 80 sheep, three goats, 58 dogs, 20 horses and one donkey were removed from the smallholding after being found living in squalor and without adequate space, food or water.

Sean Burns pictured outside court

District Judge Christopher James told Burns he had “deliberately” inflicted suffering over a “significant period of time”.

He told Burns the condition of the animals was “extremely poor”, and that some dogs and puppies had “died due to the neglect suffered at your hands”.

Atrocious conditions for the animals on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock

One horse was found with a pipe stuck in its hoof and two horses were found with no access to food or water.

They also found 10 newborn puppies in a plastic food bowl, two of which were dead.

Prosecutor Alexander Greenwood said the dogs were kept in a “hazardous environment”, with no bedding, and the floor wet with urine and faeces.

Atrocious conditions for the animals on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock

The court was told the animals displayed signs of “bullying behaviour” as food was so scarce and the bigger animals were keeping the smaller animals away from food.

The prosecution said this case of animal neglect was “one of the worst examples of its kind.”

The court heard Burns failed to provide documentation for any of the animals.

Defending, Aled Owen told the court Burns “has not got the skills to manage this farm efficiently”.

“Quite frankly, my client is illiterate,” he said.

The prosecution followed an investigation by public protection officers from Pembrokeshire Council, supported by Dyfed-Powys Police’s rural crime team.

Sean Burns is pictured alongside his mother Pamela Burns.
Sean Burns is pictured alongside his mother Pamela Burns. Although she initially faced similar charges to her son, the case against her was dropped because of her apparent ill health

Sean Burns’ mother Pamela Burns (born 12/08/1945) had faced 24 charges but the case against her ultimately did not proceed because she is said to be suffering from dementia.

Sean Burns was also convicted alongside associates John Clayton and Kenneth Evans on a string of charges relating to food hygiene, operating an illegal slaughterhouse and being involved in the illegal slaughter of sheep to produce ‘smokies’ – a West African delicacy where meat is cooked using a blow torch.

The illegal slaughterhouse operated in one of the agricultural outbuildings, with Clayton and Evans caught in the act by horrified inspectors.

The unit had been set up as a makeshift slaughter hall with six slaughtered sheep at various stages of preparation and further penned sheep awaiting the same fate.

Conditions inside the illegal slaughterhouse being operated on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock, Wales

The court was told that conditions in the slaughter hall were insanitary and the floor awash with blood from the slaughtered animals as well as by-products from the slaughter process.

A herd of pigs was seen wandering among suspended sheep carcasses, feeding on the remains of the slaughtered animals.

Approximately six further carcasses of smoked sheep were found bagged in the boot of Evans’ car, ready for onward supply.

Evidence was gathered by officers and the carcasses were seized for condemnation.

A number of sheep were subsequently euthanized for humane reasons and restrictions were placed on the herd of pigs, preventing their movement off-site to address the potential disease risk and to protect the human food chain.

Conditions inside the illegal slaughterhouse being operated on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock, Wales

Clayton was convicted in 2002 for the same offence alongside David Jones of Moelfre Farm in Llanwnnen, John Beddows of Tregaron, Ceredigion, Trefor Williams of Llandysul, Ceredigion, Alun Evans and his brother Richard Evans both of Abernewrig, Lampeter, Malcolm Taylor of Oldbury, in the West Midlands, and Alun Lloyd of Llanfrynach, Pembrokeshire

Sentencing for these offences is to follow.

Magistrates in Court in Llanelli formalised that order for the removal of the animals owned by Pamela and Sean Burns of Bramble Hall.

Sentencing: Sean Burns was given 20 weeks in prison for illegal dog breeding, animal welfare charges and other summary matters. Although Pembrokeshire Council have incurred thousands of pounds in costs, Burns was only ordered to pay a £115 victim surcharge at this stage. He was handed an indefinite ban from keeping animals, including having any involvement or influence over the care or welfare of animals.

Milford Mercury
BBC News
Western Telegraph

Bettws, Newport: Jayde Ross

#TheList Jayde Melanie Ross (aka Jayde Davies), born c. 1993, of Monnow Way, Bettws, Newport NP20 – left two bearded dragons in an abandoned property

Jayde Ross from Bettws, Newport, Wales, was banned from keeping all animals for three years after leaving two bearded dragons in an abandoned property.
Jayde Ross was banned from keeping all animals for three years after leaving two bearded dragons in an abandoned property.

Jayde Ross pleaded guilty to two animal welfare offences after leaving two bearded dragons in an empty property without appropriate heat, light, food or water. Very sadly, one of the animals perished.

The RSPCA was contacted after the bearded dragons – one male, and one female – were found abandoned at the property, “in a shocking state”.

One was severely emaciated while the other had suspected renal disease, parasitic infections and conjunctivitis.

The reptiles have complex needs, including a high requirement for heat and UVB lighting.

The RSPCA said the lizards’ condition suggested they had been without necessary food and water for some time.

Jayde Ross from Bettws, Newport, Wales. was banned from keeping all animals for three years after leaving two bearded dragons in an abandoned property.

One of the bearded dragons had to be put to sleep due to the extent of his injuries, while the other was transferred to a specialist wildlife centre for rehoming.

Sophie Daniels, RSPCA Inspector, said: “We found these poor bearded dragons in a shocking state – with one barely moving as a consequence of her condition; and both appearing very lethargic, depressed and with their bones prominent.

“Bearded dragons have very complex needs – and Wales’ cool climate means heating facilities are essential. Leaving these animals without heat placed them in grave danger, and it beggars belief that more effort had not been made to retrieve these animals or make sure they were safe after the tenant left the property.

“Owning pets is a privilege – but what we saw here was a derelict of duty that sadly resulted in one bearded dragon losing his life; and another suffering unnecessarily for a prolonged period of time.

“Thankfully, it wasn’t too late for the other lizard – but this sad case is a stark reminder as to the complex needs these animals have; and the responsibilities of owners to meet those needs.”

Sentencing: ordered to pay a total of £821 in fines, costs and charges. Banned from keeping animals for just three years.

ITV News

Cefn Hengoed, Caerphilly: Ieuan Batten

#TheList Ieuan Batten, born 23/10/1996, of Forest Avenue, Cefn Hengoed, near Ystrad Mynach CF82 – beat up his mother after she intervened to stop his savage attack on a dog

Pictured is violent thug Ieuan Batten from Cefn Hengoed in Caerphilly, Wales, who has numerous previous convictions for violence.
At just 23 years of age Ieuan Batten, who goes by the nickname Skins Citroen, has racked up 20 convictions for 49 offences. These included previous assaults on his own mother.

Prosecutor Leah Pollard told the court that 23-year-old Batten had a history of violence against his mother, with previous assault convictions recorded against him.

She said this latest attack happened just before Christmas 2019 when Batten came home “under the influence and in an aggressive mood”.

Pictured is violent thug Ieuan Batten from Cefn Hengoed in Caerphilly, Wales, who has numerous previous convictions for violence.

Judge Daniel Williams was told of how Batten’s mother and two women, one of whom was pregnant with his child, were in her house when he went “completely mad”.

After two dogs began fighting, he took one of them into the kitchen and repeatedly punched and kicked him.

Batten’s mother covered the animal to protect him before her son turned his attention to her.

Miss Pollard said: “He was in a complete rage. He grabbed her by the hair and dragged her into the living room.

“He started punching her and stamping on her all over her body.”

One of the women told police: “It lasted for about half an hour. I have never seen such violence in my life and I was shocked – especially when it was carried out by someone against their own mother.”

The victim was taken to hospital with her face “totally swollen and black and her body covered in bruises”.

Batten pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm and causing unnecessary suffering to an animal.

The court was told he had 20 previous convictions for 49 offences.

Nik Strobl, mitigating, said: “The defendant wishes to express his remorse and he can’t believe what he has done to his own mother.

“He has little recollection of what happened.”

Judge Williams told Batten, who was high on alcohol and drugs during the attack, that: “This was a savage assault. You used dreadful violence.”

Sentencing: jailed for two years and given a five-year restraining order preventing him from contacting his mother. He must pay a victim surcharge upon his release from custody. He was not banned from keeping animals.

South Wales Argus

Tonypandy, Rhondda Cynon Taf: Mathew Howell Jones

#TheList Mathew Howell Jones, born 30/05/1981, of Jones Street, Tonypandy CF40 2BY – for badger baiting and failing to take his injured dog to the vet

Mathew Howell Jones of Tonypandy, South Wales, was given a suspended jail term after interfering with a badger sett and failing to seek treatment for his badly injured dog
Mathew Howell Jones was given a suspended jail term after interfering with a badger sett and failing to seek treatment for his badly injured dog.

Mathew Howell Jones pleaded guilty to one Protection of Badgers Act 1992 offence and one Animal Welfare Act 2006 offence.

The court heard that the father-of-three was caught using dogs to interfere with a badger sett on January 20, 2019.

Jones also admitted failing to get urgent veterinary treatment for his dog, with the black terrier struggling with serious injuries.

The unnamed dog had alopecia and skin lesions, caused by sarcoptic mange – with a wound to the eye consistent with a tear injury to the lower lid. Despite these problems, Jones had not taken him to the vet.

A veterinary professional said such injuries are “commonly seen following fighting” and would be “consistent with a face-to-face encounter with another dog or a fox or a badger”.

One of badger baiter Mathew Howell Jones's dogs
One of badger baiter Mathew Howell Jones’s dogs

The dog – one of four initially seized as part of the investigation – was signed into the RSPCA’s care and ultimately put up for rehoming.

Police found blood-stained overalls in Jones’ van, though he denied ownership of the clothing. Testing of the blood confirmed it had come from a badger. RSPCA officers later found evidence of one large, freshly dug and back-filled hole at an active badger sett.

Mathew Howell Jones of Tonypandy, South Wales, was given a suspended jail term after interfering with a badger sett and failing to seek treatment for his badly injured dog

Chief inspector of the RSPCA’s special operations unit Ian Briggs said: “Interfering with a badger sett in this way is a very serious wildlife crime, and clearly had serious possible impacts both for the dogs involved and wildlife.

“One poor dog in this case was struggling with injuries that clearly needed urgent veterinary care. It’s very worrying that the injuries sustained by the dog are – according to veterinary opinion – consistent with fighting, and a face-to-face encounter with wildlife, such as a fox or a badger.

“This case is yet another example of the RSPCA’s efforts to tackle crimes against Wales’ wildlife.”

Sentencing: five-month prison sentence, suspended for 24 months; ordered to pay a total of £1,520. Disqualified from keeping all animals for four years.

Jones was also deprived by the court of all possessions related to the interference with a badger sett – including locating devices and netting.

Tivy-Side Advertiser

Llangefni, Anglesey, North Wales: Leonard Evans and Emma Roberts

#TheList Leonard Edward Evans, born c. 1981, and partner Emma Louise Roberts, born c. 1985, both of Fron Heulog, Llangefni LL77 – stole a French bulldog from a garden and tried to sell him on

Dog thieves Leonard Evans and Emma Roberts, from Llangefni, Anglesey
Dog thieves Leonard ‘Len’ Evans and Emma Roberts, from Llangefni, Anglesey

Evans and Roberts were found guilty of theft after a trial. The pair had denied stealing Bruce, a black French bulldog belonging to Catrin Tudor, at Pwllheli in August 2019. Both maintained their innocence and showed no remorse, said a probation officer.

Dog thief Leonard Evans of Llangefni, North Wales

Diane Williams, prosecuting, said Bruce was in the garden of his owner’s home in Pwllheli at about 2.30pm on August 25, 2019. She was in the house with the front door open and Bruce was running in and out. The court heard that she found the garden gate slightly open and said Bruce could not have opened it.

Realising the dog was missing, she began a search and later reported the matter to police.

Dog thief Emma Louise Roberts of Llangefni, North Wales

Family members posted messages about the dog’s disappearance on social media and there were sightings of Bruce in the company of two men and a woman in the street and on a beach. The following morning, Roberts was seen waiting for a bus with the dog and was arrested in Porthmadog .

Stolen French bulldog Bruce was found in a distressed state and was very thirsty
Stolen French bulldog Bruce was found in a distressed state and was very thirsty

Evans was arrested at his brother’s home the same morning.

A police officer said the two-year-old dog, who was valued at £1,500, was in a distressed state and very thirsty.

When Ms Tudor arrived at the police station, Bruce’s demeanour changed completely and he greeted her excitedly, said Ms Williams.

Dog thieves Leonard Evans and Emma Roberts, from Llangefni, Anglesey
Thieving Evans and Roberts pictured outside court

During the trial, Evans said he had been for a walk in the Abersoch area with Roberts and his brother Ben.

Passing Ms Tudor’s house, they had seen a dog which began following them, he said.

Evans said he had ignored the dog at first but had asked an elderly couple if they knew who owned him.

He said they had also knocked on several doors in the area but got no reply. They had taken the dog with them to his brother’s flat and later went to the beach with the animal, he said.

Ben Evans told the court he had recognised the animal and told the others who owned it and to return it.

Both Evans and Roberts denied intending to sell the dog for £1,000

Sentencing
Evans – 26-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months; 180 hours of unpaid work; ordered to pay Bruce’s owner £50 compensation and £712 costs; 35-day probation service course. The court heard the offence took place just days after Evans was made the subject of a community order.

Roberts – 12-month community order; 150 hours of unpaid work; 10-day rehabilitation activity requirement. Ordered to pay £50 compensation and £680 costs.

North Wales Live

Caldicot, South East Wales: Karl Hobday

#The List Karl Mark Hobday, born 06/11/1970, of 175 Newport Road, Caldicot NP26 4AE – left his pet dog in pain with chronic and severe skin disease for nearly two years.

Callous Karl Hobday failed to take his black Labrador Holly to the vet for treatment despite her suffering
Callous Karl Hobday failed to take his black Labrador Holly to the vet for treatment despite her suffering

Hobday failed to take black Labrador Holly a vet for treatment and the creature was in such a “shocking” condition that an RSPCA inspector at first couldn’t identify her breed.

Hobday pleaded guilty to an offence under the Animal Welfare Act when he appeared at Newport Magistrates’ Court this week.

Black Lab Holly has recovered from months of neglect at the hands of her callous owner Karl Hobday
Cruelty victim Holly has made an amazing recovery in the RSPCA’s care

Speaking after the case, RSPCA inspector Sophie Daniels said: “This dog was suffering for many months with chronic conditions which left her skin so raw, sore and thickened.

“The court heard she had suffered because her owner had not sought veterinary care, which is heartbreaking and means her suffering could have been easily avoided.

“Initially, it was very difficult to even identify the breed of this black labrador, as the skin was in such shocking condition.

“Fortunately, Holly has undergone a remarkable, heart-warming transformation in RSPCA care and has been happily rehomed. Her story is an amazing example of why the RSPCA exists.”

Sentencing: 12-month community order with 100 hours of unpaid work; ordered to pay £485 costs and charges. Banned from keeping animals for five years.

Free Press Series

Chepstow, South Wales: Matthew Benjamin

#TheList Matthew David Benjamin, born 18 May 1982, of Yew Tree Bungalow, Earlswood, Chepstow NP16 6AN – kicked his pet dog repeatedly until he died in extreme pain and distress

Matthew David Benjamin kicked Diesel to death
Diesel was subjected to a brutal attack by his owner Matthew David Benjamin, and died in agony. The builder, who is rumoured to have previous convictions for violence, was said to be wearing steel toe-capped boots as he kicked the dog repeatedly.

The Staffordshire bull terrier, known as Diesel and estimated to be aged between one and two years old, was killed in the early hours of December 4, 2019 at the home builder Shepherd shared with housemate Phillip Moseley.

Matthew David Benjamin kicked this dog, Diesel, to death

Prosecutor Paul Ricketts read the court a witness statement taken from Moseley in which he described how he had heard Benjamin walk into the property and call the dog “in a soft voice” three or four times.

The dog then ran out of the housemate’s bedroom.

“I heard Matthew and the dog go into the kitchen because I could hear two claws on the kitchen floor,” Moseley said.

“The kitchen door was closed and there was silence for a few minutes. Then suddenly I heard Matthew scream.”

He said he heard Benjamin shout “stop pissing on the f***ing floor” before the dog began to “scream and yelp”.

“I could hear every impact against the dog’s body,” he said.

Moseley said the noise was so distressing “I was sick in the bedroom because of the trauma”.

Mr Ricketts said Moseley went to the kitchen door but he was unable to push it open.

Moseley then said he heard Benjamin say: “This f***ing thing is going to die”.

“The attack felt like it lasted forever,” he said.

“I honestly believe Mathew kicked the dog more than one hundred times.”

Mr Ricketts said the police were called and Benjamin was arrested.

Moseley said: “It is so upsetting to think about the suffering the dog went through.

“It was a lovely dog and it was defenceless.”

Matthew David Benjamin kicked this dog, Diesel, to death
Matthew Benjamin kept Diesel in a cage in his filthy home

Judge David Parsons heard how a vet recorded that Diesel suffered wounds to his head and shoulders and “lacerations to the face”.

The dog had died after sustaining blunt trauma to his abdomen and head.

Mr Ricketts said: “After the defendant was arrested, he told the police he had completely lost his head and that the red mist descended.”

Andrew Twomlow of Twomlows Solicitors, mitigating, said his client entered his guilty plea on the basis Diesel was kicked six or seven times, which was accepted by the court. In his probation report, the defendant said he was stressed at the time of the attack and was “gutted” adding that “the dog didn’t deserve to die”.

The court was told that the case had attracted considerable interest on social media.

Benjamin's kitchen following his fatal attack on a helpless dog
Scene of devastation: Benjamin’s kitchen following his cruel attack on his dog

Mr Twomlow told the judge: “The public outrage is understandable. The defendant has had his property and car damaged.

“He has been subject to a degree of vilification.”

The court heard Benjamin had only had Diesel for five weeks after being given the dog by a friend and didn’t know to train him. The defendant said his new pet had destroyed his house and his property but added that the dog could be “quite pleasant” and had taken it to work with him.

Matthew David Benjamin kicked his pet dog Diesel to death
Benjamin, who is said to regularly take cocaine, has been jailed for just 17 weeks for killing a defenceless dog

Mr Twomlow said Benjamin owned a “successful business” called Honey Badger Construction and Plant Hire Ltd and had at one point employed 20 people. He currently trades under the name M. Benjamin Building Services.

Judge Parson told the defendant: “This was a cowardly and vicious attack on a harmless animal and you showed no empathy for its suffering.”

Sentencing: jailed for 17 weeks; £122 surcharge. Banned from keeping animals for life.

South Wales Argus
WalesOnline

Additional information

Alternative address for Matthew Benjamin: 8 Usk Road, Shirenewton, Chepstow NP16 6RY

Blackwood, Caerphilly, South Wales: Nicole Jones

#TheList Nicole Mireille Jones, born 01/01/1990, of 22 Brynglas Avenue, Pontllanfraith, Blackwood NP12 2DB – left her Husky dog to suffer in agony with multiple ailments

Dog abuser Nicole Jones from Blackwood in Caerphilly
Nicole Jones

RSPCA Cymru had been seeking to help Jones, and made multiple visits to her property related to the condition of eight-year-old husky Chad.

Husky Chad was put to sleep on humane grounds after being neglected by Nicole Jones
Husky Chad was put to sleep on humane grounds

Sadly, Jones failed to provide Chad – who ultimately had chronic ear infections and deteriorating physical condition – with the veterinary care he so badly needed. His skin condition was so bad that vets reported the skin “falling away” when touched. He had to be put to sleep due to the extent of his injuries.

Mother-of-one Jones pleaded guilty to an Animal Welfare Act offence of causing her Husky crossbreed to suffer.

Chad in healthier times before his cruel owner decided to neglect him

Gemma Black, RSPCA inspector, said: “RSPCA repeatedly tried to help this individual; but they did not ensure the dog had appropriate veterinary care to tackle Chad’s dreadful physical conditions and painful ear infections.

Husky Chad was put to sleep on humane grounds after being neglected by Nicole Jones
The 8yo husky’s condition had deteriorated to a point where he could not be saved.

“Sadly, poor Chad’s skin got so bad that vets told us it was beginning to fall away when touched. There was simply no choice but to put this poor, suffering Husky crossbreed to sleep.

Dog abuser Nicole Jones from Blackwood in Caerphilly
Nicole Jones, who is apparently a heroin addict, is banned from keeping animals for life

“This sad story is a reminder that people should always seek help if they are struggling to look after their dog. The inaction of Chad’s owner cost this dog dearly, and has led to her being banned from keeping animals ever again.”

Sentencing: 18-week prison sentence, suspended for two years. Ordered to pay a total of £565. Banned from keeping animals for life with the right of appeal after five years.

Wales 247
South Wales Argus

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Additional info: the South Wales Argus gives Jones’s address as Pant-y-Fid Road in Aberbargoed, Bargoed CF81.

Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales: Arron Dixon

#TheList Arron Lee Dixon, born 26/01/1992, of 17 Aberfan Fawr, Merthyr Tydfil CF48 4PE – neglected and beat his horses

Horse abuser Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

Arron Lee Dixon was found guilty of a string of animal welfare offences relating to three ponies.

The father-of-one failed to provide a suitable diet and environment for the ponies, who were being kept at a site in Bryngoleu, and was even caught beating one of them.

Neglected horses owned by Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

All three animals – a grey gelding Welsh, a male skewbald native and a small male skewbald native – were found by RSPCA officers to be underweight and had little or no land to graze on or supplementary feed.

Neglected horses owned by Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

One skewbald pony was so underweight and in such poor condition that a vet said he had “suffered unnecessarily” while another pony had escaped from the field and was found grazing elsewhere.

On March 21, 2019, when RSPCA officers were carrying out a follow-up check on the welfare of the ponies, an officer also caught Dixon beating one of the animals.

Neglected horses owned by Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

The ponies were taken into the care of the RSPCA and were made available for rehoming.

Dixon, who runs a house and rubbish clearance business called Dixon’s Removals, was convicted of five animal welfare offences dating to February and March 2019. He had pleaded not guilty at an earlier hearing but was found guilty in his absence.

Horse abuser Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

An RSPCA spokesman said the charity had already given Dixon advice on horse care in February because the ponies had little or no land to graze. But when officers returned on March 21, Dixon hadn’t addressed the problem or provided supplementary feed and the ponies were underweight.

Flyer for Merthyr Tydfil horse abuser Arron Dixon's house clearance business
Violent horse abuser Arron Lee Dixon runs a house and rubbish clearance business

It was during this visit while waiting for a vet and the police to arrive, Dixon was caught beating the skewbald native pony.

Gemma Cooper, an RSPCA spokeswoman, said: “These ponies were grazed illegally on inappropriate land without supplementary feed, and therefore were not having their needs met and one was so underweight, vets found him to be suffering.

“We tried to work with Dixon previously but returned to the site to find improvements had not been made. One pony had even escaped the field and was subsequently found grazing elsewhere.

“Thankfully, we were able to rescue these ponies and offer them a second chance of happiness. All three have made an amazing transformation and are now available for rehoming.”

Dixon was found guilty of three charges relating to the weight of the animals, one charge for failing to provide a suitable diet and one charge for failing to meet the skewbald native pony’s needs to be protected from pain, suffering or injury by inappropriate handling and physical ill-treatment including hitting.

Sentencing: 18-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months; 20 rehabilitation days. 10-week curfew; £1,000 in court costs. Banned for five years from keeping animals.

WalesOnline

Upper Tumble, Llanelli, Carmarthenshire: Thomas King

#TheList Thomas Martin King, born 11/01/1970, of Waungoch, Upper Tumble, Llanelli SA14 6BX – left four ponies to suffer with overgrown and curling hooves

One of four ponies found with painfully overgrown hooves
One of four ponies found with painfully overgrown hooves

Thomas Martin King pleaded guilty to two offences under the Animal Welfare Act in that he caused unnecessary suffering to a piebald female Shetland pony by failing to explore and address overgrown hooves resulting in her lameness and that he also did not ensure that three other ponies were protected from pain, injury, suffering and disease as shown by their overgrown hooves.

Following the case, RSPCA inspector, Nic De Celis said when he saw the ponies at Beudy Bach in Upper Tumble at the end of July 2019, he found their hooves were “extremely overgrown and curling.”

He said: “As I approached the group of ponies they began to move away, three of them were nodding and moving abnormally and then began high stepping as they picked up speed.

“However the fourth pony, a piebald, appeared to be in some distress and was unable to walk properly and could not keep up with the others. The pony’s front hooves had overgrown forward, were curled up and back on themselves and were rubbing the front of the pony’s front legs when she walked, causing them to bleed.”

The owner – King – was in attendance and had requested for a vet and farrier to be present who arrived at the location, with King keen for the ponies to be treated straight away.

“Once the ponies’ feet had all been trimmed and filed I advised the owner that he must ensure any follow-up treatment advised by his vet is administered and if there are issues he should contact his vet immediately,” said inspector De Celis.

Two days later inspector De Celis attended the location with a vet. One of the ponies appeared sore when walking and the owner was advised to liaise with his vet to provide some form of ongoing pain relief.

In mitigation, the court heard that the horses have been well treated since intervention and King had been remorseful.

Inspector De Celis added: “It is just so important to ensure that hooves are cared for – a simple phone call to a farrier much earlier could have stopped these ponies from any pain or discomfort.”

Sentencing: 12-week prison sentence suspended for 12 months. Ordered to pay £400 costs and a victim surcharge of £122.

South Wales Guardian