Timaru man convicted of animal cruelty

A 56-year-old man from Timaru has been fined $ 5,400 for animal cruelty.  (File photo)


A 56-year-old man from Timaru has been fined $ 5,400 for animal cruelty. (File photo)

A man from Timaru was ordered to pay $ 5,400 after he admitted a charge of animal abuse and a charge of reckless animal abuse after animal protection officers found a severely emaciated cow and a pig on his property in such poor condition. they had to be euthanized.

Magnus Valdimar Karlsson, 56, was sentenced on both counts when he appeared in Timaru District Court on Tuesday after pleading guilty in April.

Animal welfare inspectors from the Ministry of Primary Industries visited the Karlsson property on August 26, 2019.

At the time, he was leasing a 25 acre block on Coonoor Rd, Timaru. Inspectors found four cows, three bobby calves, a yearling calf, 40 sheep, 20 lambs, seven pigs and three horses.

In a summary of the facts, read in court, inspectors said they found a lean cow that was lying sideways and dying. The cow looked emaciated and frothed in the mouth.

A veterinarian examined the cow and recommended euthanasia as soon as possible to end her suffering.

The vet said in her report that the cow was “visibly emaciated and dehydrated” and was “unrecoverable and would never get up.”

“The post-mortum results showed that there was no subcutaneous fat and that there was significant muscle wasting; and that the cow’s rumen was “absolutely full of plastic.”

Animal welfare inspectors also observed plastic bags, plastic trays, rope, twine, wire, metal, wood and old fence wire lying around the pens. There were sheep and pigs eating plastic bags and plastic trays.

At the southern end of the farm, there were pigsties which housed seven pigs.

“The pigsties provided inadequate shelter without covered dry areas for the pigs,” the summary reads.

“One of the pigs was not carrying weight on its right front paw and limped out loudly around the pen. The leg seemed swollen.

The vet also examined the pig and found that “the injured pig was not carrying weight on its right front paw. The fetlock joint was massively swollen, with an old laceration visible on the dorso-medial surface ”.

She recommended euthanasia because “the pig was in pain and it was unlikely to recover.”

Karlsson was interviewed on August 28, 2019 and said he lived about 200-300 meters from the property and when asked how often he checked the animals he replied: ‘I’m almost all there. days”.

When asked how long the pig had been injured, Karlsson said he saw “the pig limping about a week ago”.

According to the summary of facts, Karlsson said he did not call a vet because he “was going to see if she was okay.” He also said he did not notice that the right front leg was cut and swollen until the day MPI visited and the pig was euthanized.

Judge Joanna Maze acknowledged Karlsson’s early guilty plea, cooperation with MPI and remorse, and said it was likely an example of “well-meaning but incompetent care”.

“A cattle beast isn’t going to eat plastic by choice… the beast had nothing to eat,” Maze said.

Maze said animal welfare issues were taken seriously by the public and that “the lack of food and allowing plastic waste to accumulate allowed an unfavorable situation for the animals to continue for longer. than you admit ”.

Maze started with a basic fine of $ 9,000 in total, before ordering him to pay $ 5,400.

She said Karlsson had to be very careful with animal welfare as he was not site based.

Karlsson’s lawyer Leticia Glover said Karlsson suffered significant damage to her reputation and that this was her only offense.

He has since taken the property out of stock, Glover said.

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