Cruelty rap farmers jailed

The Star, 20/10/2006

A farmer convicted of animal cruelty has been sentenced to 28 days’ jail – while the State confiscates the entire stock of his farm.

  Martin McAndrew of Cornhill, Pollatomas north Mayo had earlier been ordered to dispose of all of his cattle and sheep within six weeks. But when he appeared again before Belmullet District Court he agreed he still had 25 sheep and 25 cattle, as well as “four pet sheep.”

  An Agriculture Department inspector who visited the farm on October 2 said many of the animals were lame, emaciated and blind.

  Judge Mary Devins fined McAndrew €500 for “cruel ill-treatment of a cow” and €200 for littering and sentenced him to 28 days’ jail so officials could confiscate the remaining animals. Recognisance in the event of an appeal was fixed at €3,000.

Tiny puppy is forced to run solo

Dog saved after siblings cruelly die

The Star, 26/11/2004

Abused puppy Solo must grow up without his little brothers and sisters after they all died when cruelly abandoned in a bog.

  The adorable four-week-old is the only survivor of 10 puppies thrown inside two tied plastic bags and left to die in a peat bog in Crossmalina, Co Mayo.

  The spaniels were found by a passerby two weeks ago, who then contacted Briarfields Animal Sanctuary in Lisacul, Co Roscommon.

  The sanctuary is the home of Edward and Patricia Preston, who have been looking after stray and injured dogs for nine years.

  “It’s the kind of things we deal with every week,” Edward told the Star.

The Prestons have between 40 and 50 dogs at any one time, and they post pictures of them on the Internet in the hole that someone will give them a home.

  Last year, a three-legged dog named Lucky was given a new home in Sweden and even appeared on television.

  “Lucky was found in a ditch by a lady walking her own dog,” said Mr Preston.

  “The lady knew she had just been hit by a car. We went along to see what happened, and when we got there we found she had a crushed leg, which had to be amputated.


“We took care of her for two years until she was seen by a vet in Sweden. Subsequently, she appeared on a Swedish Rescue Television,” he said.

Mr Preston said they constantly find it difficult to fund their sanctuary, and donations are very much needed.

Donation cheques or postal orders can be sent to Briarfields Animal Sanctuary, in Lisacul, Co Roscommon.

Farmer with animal cruelty conviction ordered to reduce stock levels or go to jail

Mayo Advertiser, 06/03/2009

A farmer from Crimlin, Brickens, Claremorris was told he would face three months in prison unless he reduced his stock levels at Ballyhaunis District Court this week.

  “Do you know where Castlerea is?” Judge Geoffrey Browne asked the farmer, John Joe Mulkeen, to which Mulkeen replied “I do.”

  “Well that’s where you will be going for three months unless you reduce the number of sheep on your land,” by Judge Browne warned him. Mulkeen was in court to face charges after gardaí re-entered charges against him after he failed to reduce the number of sheep he kept to 100 as he was ordered to do following a cruelty conviction previously.

Philip Breslin, a veterinary officer with the Department of Agriculture, told the court that he had visited Mulkeen’s farm on December 22 2008 and Mulkeen had 280 sheep. He visited it again on March 2 and there were 260 sheep after a head count. Mulkeen told the court that if he had to reduce his numbers to below 200 he would have to give up farming because it would not be worth it to farm only 100 sheep. Judge Browne gave Mulkeen until June 2 to reduce the numbers or face going to Castlerea for three months.