On Tuesday 18th June, Wagga Wagga District Court Judge dismissed an appeal and confirmed the conviction and sentences imposed upon a Tumorrama local man by the Local Court for cruelty to animals that were kept on his property. The man had previously plead guilty to the charges however appealed against the severity of the Local Court’s sentence.
An RSPCA NSW Inspector was called to the above property on 8 February 2011 along with two police officers and a veterinarian after receiving information about the sheep, cattle and pigs depastured on the property.
Several sheep with overgrown fleece were observed and it was noted from their behaviour that they were fly struck. The fencing on the entire property was in a state of disrepair and made segregating and managing breeding stock impossible.
Several underweight pigs were reported, some of which were clearly underweight and struggling to stand in faecal contaminated mud up to their knees. Many of the pigs were suffering from skin lesions and there was no food or water available for the animals. Carcasses were also found in various stages of decomposition.
The man was interviewed by the Inspector and admitted to being the owner of the property and having responsibility for all animals.
On Friday 18 February 2012 an RSPCA Inspector attended the property again and found a ewe in one of the pens that had previously contained the pigs. The ewe was cast on its back and unable to rise without assistance. The Inspector also noted 20 sheep with overgrown fleece in a nearby paddock that should have been shorn as per instructions given to the owner during the previous visit.
The owner received a suspended gaol sentence for a period of 15 months and was placed on one Good Behaviour Bond for two years and a second Good Behaviour Bond for ten months (to run concurrently) with conditions that included that he must permit the RSPCA NSW to enter his property to inspect and assess the condition of animals owned by him.
He was also prohibited from owning pigs and sheep for a period of five years and ordered to organise the sale of any sheep and pigs currently in his care within 30 days. He was also ordered to pay court costs of $3,000.
- Committing an act of aggravated cruelty upon a sheep (2 charges)
- Failure to provide veterinary treatment for a sheep (1 charge)
- Failure to provide adequate food to six pigs (1 charge)
- Committing an act of cruelty by allowing a Mickey bull to constantly ride heifers (1 charge)
- Failure to exercise care for 69 sheep (2 charges)
All charges are under NSW Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and Regulation