An illegal puppy trader who caused suffering to animals in his care has been banned from keeping pets for life and received a £2600 fine.
Christopher Gorman, 54, of Killearn Crescent, Plains, was found guilty of failing to provide veterinary treatment to two mastiff pups suffering from parvo virus, deliberately striking dogs in his care with a length of timber, and failing to ensure a suitable environment, namely providing adequate shelter, warmth and access to appropriate food and water.
He was sentenced at Airdire Sheriff Court yesterday.
Commenting on the investigation and court case, an undercover inspector said, “Gorman has a long history of disregarding the welfare of the animals in his care.
“Earlier this year Gorman was sentenced to a 6 month restriction of liberty, a 10 year ban from owning animals and received a £500 fine for trading puppies without a licence.
“This case has highlighted his ongoing cruelty and we’re delighted that he has been dealt with by the courts.
“The mastiff type puppies were suffering from parvo virus which is an excruciatingly debilitating illness which can in some cases result in death.
“To not seek veterinary treatment for these pups despite their obvious distress shows Gorman’s priorities lay entirely in the profit that could be gained from selling on puppies to naïve new owners, rather than in the welfare of the dogs.
“Furthermore, the evidence showed Gorman’s violent behaviour towards these dogs. He can clearly be seen hitting them with a stick, all whilst being content to leave them in less than suitable living conditions.”
The inspector continued, “Mr Gorman made it very clear that he had no intention of stopping his activities and we are very pleased that our investigation and the subsequent prosecution will prevent further suffering to the dogs and puppies that were in his care and also prevent him from causing other dogs and puppies to suffer as a result of his future actions.
“This case highlights the ongoing efforts by Scottish SPCA under the banner of Operation Delphin to identify and target persons willing to compromise the welfare of dogs and puppies in the pursuit of profit at the expense of animal welfare and the law.
“The puppy trade is big business and we’re committed to continuing to tackle this horrific trade.
“We’re glad this case has been dealt with by the courts and delighted that the life ban will help prevent further animals suffering at the hands of Mr Gorman. We are still pushing for tougher and more consistent sentencing, including an increase in the minimum jail sentence from 12 months to 5 years.
“It is our belief that sentences should act as a deterrent to those who commit these serious crimes and in this circumstance we were hoping for a harsher sentence, however Gorman has been sentenced as a first time offender following his appeal of our previous successful conviction.”