Current Affairs

Vet who ran pet shop from home convicted of importing illegal puppies

A mobile vet based in Prestwich has been convicted for illegally importing puppies into the UK for sale and running an illegal pet shop.

Viktor Molnar, 58, was registered with the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and was originally from Hungary. At Manchester Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday (7 March) he pleaded guilty to offences under the Rabies (Importation of Dogs, Cats and other Mammals) Order 1974 and sections 10, 73 and 75 of the Animal Health Act 1981, and to an offence under the Pet Animals Act 1951 for using his premises as a pet shop without a licence.

Bury Licensing Service investigated Molnar after a retired teacher bought a miniature dachshund puppy from him for £700. The puppy was ill on journey home, prompting the customer to ask Molnar for its pet passport.

When she took the puppy to her vet, she was also told that it was between eight to 12 weeks old, considerably younger than the age on its vaccination card.

Bury council found that this meant the puppy would’ve been too young to be legally brought into the UK. Its vaccination card also indicated that it had not had its rabies jabs or any multi-headed tapeworm treatment.

Renfrewshire council was then contacted and an inspection was done at Molnar’s home in February 2016. An animal health inspector found four adult dogs and five miniature ‘teacup’ dachshund puppies inside.

Molnar was sentenced to a 270-hour community order and disqualified from operating a pet shop or a boarding establishment for 10 years. He was also ordered to pay compensation of £2,686 to the retired teacher as well as contribution costs of £2,500.

The Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons has been contacted by Bury council over his fitness to continue practising as a vet.

Angela Lomax, head of trading standards and licensing at Bury council, said: “Young puppies should never be transported long distances into the UK, yet underage and unvaccinated puppies continue to be illegally sent here from abroad – often in appalling conditions – and are destined to be sold via online adverts to unsuspecting members of the public.”

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