Cornish couple caught illegally raising puppies
A married couple convicted of illegal commercial dog breeding have been fined and charged with thousands of pounds in costs.
It follows a lawsuit brought by Cornish Council license team.
On Thursday, October 7, at Plymouth Magistrates’ Court, David Eric Stephens, 61, and his wife, Angela Patricia Stephens, 45, both residing at Wayland Farm, Pensilva, between Callington and Liskeard, were convicted of ‘having operated a commercial dog. breeding operation without a license.
The Stephens were each fined £ 1,250 and £ 1,250 for council fees and a victim fine surcharge of £ 125. In total, the couple were ordered to pay £ 5,250. David Stephens was previously from Kenwyn, Truro.
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Kevin Hill, prosecuting on behalf of the council, told the court that the licensing team identified the unlicensed dog breeding during a spot check on the farm where a large number of dogs and a litter of puppies were discovered hidden both in a barn and in the attic of another barn.
The court was satisfied that the council’s subsequent investigation had established beyond a reasonable doubt that in the course of pandemic containment by 2020, when the price of dogs and puppies increased significantly, at least three litters of puppies, but possibly more, had been bred and then sold commercially.
Councilor Carol Mold, Cornwall Council Ward Portfolio Holder, said: “The outcome of this case sends a clear message that breeders of unauthorized dogs will be sought, investigated fully and, if necessary, prosecuted.
“The council will always strive to work with dog breeders to comply with dog breeding legislation and to maintain high levels of animal welfare.
“Some breeders cause problems for potential buyers, the board and the animals themselves and we are taking action to address these issues. “
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