Farmer convicted at Newry Court

Date published: 15 May 2017

A COUNTY Down farmer was today convicted at Newry Magistrates Court of two charges of failure to dispose of livestock carcasses, two charges of failure to ensure the needs of animals were met to the extent required by good practice, one charge of causing unnecessary suffering to a ram and two charges of failure to maintain veterinary medicine records.

A County Down farmer was today convicted at Newry Magistrates Court of two charges of failure to dispose of livestock carcasses, two charges of failure to ensure the needs of animals were met to the extent required by good practice, one charge of causing unnecessary suffering to a ram and two charges of failure to maintain veterinary medicine records. 

Derek James Trimble (50), Spelga Park, Hilltown, pleaded guilty and was fined £1400 plus £15 offender levy.

This case arose from a number of welfare inspections carried out on Mr Trimble’s farm during March 2016.

 

 

 

Notes to editors: 

 

  1. Mr Trimble was convicted of two charges, of failure to comply with an animal by-product requirement in that he failed to hold bodies or body parts of farmed animals that had not been slaughtered for human consumption, pending consignment or disposal, in accordance with the EU Control Regulation as read with the EU Implementing Regulation, in such a manner as to ensure that any animal or bird would not have access to them, contrary to Regulation 19 of the Animal By-Products (Enforcement) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2015.
  2. Mr Trimble was convicted of two charges, of failure to take such steps as were reasonable in all the circumstances to ensure the needs of animals, namely sheep, for which he was responsible, were met to the extent required by good practice, contrary to Article 9(1) of the Welfare of Animals Act (Northern Ireland) 2011.
  3. Mr Trimble was convicted of one charge, of by reason or an act or failure to act by him, caused unnecessary suffering to a ram, and he knew or ought reasonably to have known that the said act or failure to act would have that effect or was likely to do so, contrary to Section 4(1) of the Welfare of Animals Act (Northern Ireland) 2011.
  4. Mr Trimble was convicted of two charges, of failure to record details concerning the purchase or acquisition and administration of veterinary medicinal products contrary to Regulation 43(k) of the Veterinary Medicines Regulations 2013.
  5. It would be regarded as good practice to remove without delay an animal carcase from a farm to prevent spread of disease and protect public health and avoid detrimental effects to the environment.
  6. The Department gives high priority to the welfare of animals and operates a vigorous enforcement policy to ensure full compliance of regulatory requirements. Any breaches are investigated thoroughly and offenders prosecuted as necessary.
  7. Everyone is aware of the risks to human health from the improper use of medicines in animals. This is of particular relevance when it comes to observing withdrawal times of medicines administered to animals which are subsequently slaughtered for human consumption.
    The main areas for concern are:
    (i) the slaughter for human consumption of an animal before the recommended withdrawal period has been observed for drugs which may themselves have direct side effects in humans.
    (ii) the slaughter of animals entering the food chain containing a drug to which human pathogens are capable of developing a resistance to. This reduces the effectiveness with which human diseases can be controlled by a drug.
    If proper medicine records are not kept there is a risk of animals which have been treated, but whose withdrawal periods have not been observed being slaughtered for human consumption, or sold on to another herd from which they will be slaughtered for human consumption without withdrawal times being observed.
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