Farmer who deprived cattle of water banned from farming for 10 years – The Irish Times

A farmer who deprived his cattle of water has avoided jail but has received a 10-year ban from farming after a veterinary inspector found animals in various stages of decomposition on his farm in Dunmanway, Co Cork.

Defence barrister Alan O’Dwyer told Cork Circuit Criminal Court that his client Trevor Deane of Lettergorman, Dunmanway, Co Cork, was “deeply ashamed” at the “deplorable” conditions on his farm.

Veterinary inspector Michael Kelleher told Judge Helen Boyle that he attended at the farm in Dunmanway on February 2nd, 2021.

When he went in to the first shed, he found nine dead animals in various stages of decomposition. One of the animals was “recently dead”. The others appeared to have been deceased for a number of months.

Mr Kelleher went in to the second shed where he found seven dead animals. Again, some were recently dead whilst others had been dead for a number of months. No water was available to the animals in either shed.

When he went to a field beside the shed he found two carcasses. He also discovered two calves in “filthy” conditions in a pen and further out the yard he found further bovine skeletal remains.

Mr Kelleher said that he spoke to Mr Deane about the neglect. He directed him to provide water to the animals.

“There was unnecessary suffering to the animals by the lack of water. Regarding the water, he said the well was contaminated.”

Mr Kelleher said that he told Deane (38) that the situation at the farm was unacceptable. The court heard that Deane also had a suckler herd in Coppeen in West Cork.  There was no issue with animal welfare on the second farm.

Mr Kelleher stated that Deane had owned ninety animals at any given time. The veterinary inspector returned to the farm in Dunmanway on February 4th, 2021, to find that there was still no water available to animals on the farm.

Kelleher returned to the farm on June 22nd, 2021. There was no animal welfare concerns at this time. However, when Mr Kelleher went back to the farm on March 7th of this year he found an emaciated cow who was unable to stand. The calves on the farm were also untagged.

He returned on May 6th to find that the untagged animals still hadn’t been registered. He discovered the carcasses of three calves on the farm. There was no water available to the animals.

Mr Deane has since destocked and hopes to let out his land. He is no longer involved in any husbandry. Mr Kelleher said that in his opinion Mr Deane should not be allowed to keep livestock.

Mr O’Dwyer said that at the time of the offences Mr Deane was experiencing a number of personal issues and complications, and was ashamed and apologetic.

Mr Deane had pleaded guilty to two charges involving the neglect of cattle and failing to give them enough clean drinking water.

Deane admitted that he failed to provide a sufficient quantity of wholesome uncontaminated drinking water to bovine animals under his control.

He also pleaded guilty to neglecting or being reckless regarding the health of bovine animals on February 4th, 2021.

The court heard that Deane had previously been convicted of assault. Judge Boyle said that Mr Deane had fallen “woefully short” in the care of the animals.

“You failed to provide water which is fundamental to the survival of all animals. You caused needless suffering to animals you were responsible for.”

She noted the guilty plea in the case and the fact that Deane had voluntarily destocked. Taking his family difficulties in to consideration, Judge Boyle imposed a two-year suspended sentence on Deane and banned him from keeping livestock for a period of ten years. She also fined him €750.

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