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14 March 2000
A Kaikoura farmer was fined $1000 with additional fees and expenses totalling $880 under the Animal Protection Act 1960 for neglect of his animals last week.
On 9 March, David Ronald Johnston appeared in the Kaikoura District Court charged with neglecting his sows, following an inspection of his farm on the outskirts of Kaikoura late last month.
The inspector said the farm smelled of rotting flesh, and very thin pigs were evident on roadside paddocks. A full inspection of the farm found sows with hip bones and spines visible, and a number of dead carcasses located on paddocks throughout the property. Inside a pig shelter, another three dead pigs were located as well as a moribund sow. The sow had been in the same position for some time. It had to be euthanased by a veterinarian.
The defence had suggested that the sows had reached their emaciated condition from other sources such as smothering, lead poisoning and thin sow syndrome.
The judge dismissed this as it was apparent he said that Johnston was aware of the sow’s condition and did not address the problem. The judge concluded that the prosecution had proven its case of neglect without a doubt
The Animal Protection Act 1960 was replaced by the Animal Welfare Act 1999 on 1 January 2000. An offence of a similar nature could now attract a penalty of up to $25,000 and, or imprisonment of up to six months.
For further information contact:
David Barbour, Adviser, MAF Enforcement Unit, Telephone: 021 377 128