Following the outcry by concerned people about the dog found buried alive with a nail in his head, it is instructive to note the approach of the court in another case involving animal abuse.
John Wilcock, a puppy farmer, pleaded guilty to five offences under the AWA of causing ‘unnecessary suffering’ to numerous dogs. He was sentenced to 20 weeks imprisonment suspended for 18 months.
Bernadette Nunney was similarly charged with causing unnecessary suffering to many puppies. She pleaded not guilty to six offences. She was convicted. When a person pleads not guilty they are normally subject to a harsher sentence as they cannot claim a ‘discount’ on their sentence for pleading guilty. Nunney was sentenced to the same suspended sentence as Wilcock. Nunney also had a 12-week curfew order imposed and a rehabilitation activity.
The RSPCA found a ‘wheelbarrow full of dead and dying dogs’ at their Puppy Farm. They found a total of 43 dogs of whom ‘many had no water or bedding.’ [See: The Times: 19/11/16]
[NB. The maximum sentence in any event, regardless of the gravity of the animal’s suffering, is six months and a fine.]