Wales

Man jailed for neglecting animals found in squalid conditions

Sean Ronald Burns arriving at Swansea Magistrates' Court
Image caption Sean Ronald Burns was jailed for 20 weeks

A man who kept more than 200 animals in squalid conditions has been jailed in "one of the worst examples" of neglect.

Police found the animals including two puppies and piglet which had died on Bramble Hall Farm near Pembroke Dock, Pembrokeshire, on 27 January 2019.

Many of the 80 sheep, 20 horses, a donkey, 58 dogs and 53 pigs were without adequate space, food or water.

Sean Burns, 49, was jailed for 20 weeks and ordered to pay a £115 surcharge at Swansea Magistrates' 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".

Image copyright Pembrokeshire council
Image caption The prosecution said this case of animal neglect was "one of the worst examples of its kind."

The court heard Dyfed-Powys Police officers visited Burns's smallholding and found the animals.

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.

Image copyright Pembrokeshire council
Image caption Animals were found without adequate space, food or water

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.

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

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

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

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.

Image copyright Pembrokeshire council
Image caption The condition of the animals was "extremely poor"

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

More than 200 animals were subsequently taken from the farm, re-homed or sold.

Councillor Cris Tomos said what officers found "surpassed anything" they had encountered before in their careers, with a "complete lack of regard for the welfare of animals".

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites