15 March 2017

A farmer was fined by the courts yesterday (Tuesday 14 March) after being successfully prosecuted by Sheffield City Council’s Environmental Protection Service for transporting a cow that was not fit for transport.

A report had been received from the veterinary officer working at Woolley Brothers slaughterhouse in Rother Valley Way, Sheffield, about a cow that had arrived there on 22nd November 2016.

The vet reported that, when the cow was unloaded, it was down on the ground and had difficulties standing.

He described it as a severe case of lameness, and ordered the animal to be slaughtered to avoid any more unnecessary suffering.

Investigations led officers to interview Martin Wilkinson, 46, of Walkerith Road in Morton, Gainsborough, Lincolnshire.

Mr Wilkinson advised that he had not consulted a vet prior to moving the cow.

At Sheffield Magistrates’ Court yesterday, Mr Wilkinson pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering, and was fined £600. A total of £553 in costs were awarded to the council, and Mr Wilkinson was also ordered to pay a £60 victim surcharge.

Councillor Bryan Lodge, Sheffield City Council’s cabinet member for the environment, said:

“The council takes its duties regarding animal health extremely seriously. Cases like this, where animals are transported when they are not fit to be transported, can be avoided.

“We are pleased that the courts view these offences as seriously as we do, and we will not hesitate to take proceedings on animal welfare cases where the council has a statutory responsibility.”