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HomeFarming NewsFarmer jailed after calf collapses in 'thigh-deep mud'
Catherina Cunnanehttps://www.thatsfarming.com/
Catherina Cunnane hails from a fifth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the company in 2015.
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Farmer jailed after calf collapses in ‘thigh-deep mud’

A 51-year-old farmer has been jailed for 32 weeks and has been banned from keeping animals for life.

Herefordshire Council’s Trading Standards animal health team brought the case against the Bringsty farmer, who appeared before Hereford Magistrates Court on February, 11th, 2021.

Charles Dowswell Parry, of Ashminton Farm,  Stone House Lane, Bringsty Herefordshire WR6 5TF, previously of Riverlands Farm, Teme Lane, Leigh, Worcestershire WR6 5JY, was found guilty of breaching a previous 10-year disqualification order imposed on him in November 2019, six new animal welfare offences, and two animal by-products offences.

Farmer jailed and fined 

After a three-day hearing, Parry was sentenced to 32 weeks imprisonment with immediate effect. Furthermore, the judge ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £122 and £5,000 towards costs. Also, his disqualification from keeping all animals, except his dog, was increased from 10 years to a lifetime.

After being tipped off, animal health officers found a calf “collapsed in thigh-deep mud with muddy water running out of its nostrils”.

An Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) veterinary inspector concluded that the calf was suffering and beyond any veterinary help, meaning it had to be euthanised where it lay.

The veterinary officer stated in court that during 29 years in his role, this had been a particularly extreme, harrowing, and distressing experience to deal with.

They seized a further 50 cattle as they were being kept in an unsuitable environment and had an inadequate diet, the court heard.

Animal Health officers from Herefordshire and Worcestershire councils and veterinary officers from the APHA also discovered a sheep carcass in a decomposed state.

Besides, they found 60 sheep being kept in such a way that they were exposed to “pain, suffering and disease”.

Cattle ‘up to their bellies in mud’

David Hough, Herefordshire Council’s Trading Standards Service Manager, said: “This is the worst case of animal suffering we remember the team having to deal with.”

“The unfortunate calf had been slowly drowning in the mud, and the other cattle were up to their bellies in mud with limited food and water.”

“The complete lack of correct care and treatment of the cattle and sheep was deplorable.”

Denied owning cattle and sheep  

Although officers located the cattle passports, Parry denied owning the cattle and sheep. He gave names of two individuals, who he claimed owned the animals and went so far as to leave a telephone message with one of the individuals asking them to corroborate his lies.

In a previous case taken by Herefordshire Council, Parry was disqualified from keeping all animals except his dog for ten years. He allowed livestock, including 50 calves, to suffer and failed to correctly store and dispose of large amounts of deadstock.

Parry was required by the court to transfer ownership of all his livestock, which he failed to do, the court heard.

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