Farmer convicted at Enniskillen court

Date published: 08 November 2017

A Fermanagh farmer was today convicted at Enniskillen Magistrates’ Court of two charges of failure to present all animals for tuberculosis testing and one charge of failure to notify the deaths of nine cattle.

Robert Stewart Armstrong, Gorteen, Tempo, Enniskillen pleaded guilty and was fined £1,500 plus £15 offender levy.

This case arose from Robert Armstrong’s failure to carry out a tuberculosis test on two occasions and offences discovered during a cattle identification inspection carried out by inspectors from DAERA’s Veterinary Service Welfare and Enforcement Branch.

Notes to editors: 

  1. Mr Armstrong was convicted of two charges of, being the keeper of bovine animals namely cattle without lawful excuse, failed upon request by an authorised officer of the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs to present all such animals or carcases in his charge for a Tuberculosis test on the said herd, in contravention of Article 3(2)(b) of the Tuberculosis (Examination and Testing) Scheme Order (Northern Ireland) 1999, contrary to Article 52(1) of the Diseases of Animals (Northern Ireland) Order 1981.
  2. Mr Armstrong was convicted of one charge of, being the keeper of bovine animals, in contravention of Article 7.1 of the Council Regulations (EC) No 1760/2000 failed to notify the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs of the death of nine bovine animals in accordance with the provisions of Regulation 8 of the Cattle Identification (Notification of Births, Deaths and Movement) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1999 contrary to Regulation 5(1) of the Cattle Identification (Notification of Births, Deaths and Movement) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1999.
  3. The control of Bovine Tuberculosis (TB) is dependent on identifying reactor animals at tests conducted by the Department. Failure to present animals for tests undermines efforts by both farmers and the Department to reduce the incidence of disease.
  4. The majority of herd keepers fully comply with the requirements of the TB eradication scheme. Current disease levels have risen to levels not seen for several years and therefore especially at this time it is vital all stakeholders work together to reduce the prevalence.
  5. Breaches of the Cattle Identification Regulations weaken and undermine the cattle traceability system in Northern Ireland, including the integrity of the Department’s Animal and Public Health Information System (APHIS).
  6. The current interest in food safety by both Government and consumer groups means it is essential that the Department is clearly seen to be implementing all legislation pertaining to the traceability of livestock.
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