• Text size
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Farmer sent to jail for breaking TB rules

A WELSH farmer will spend 42 weeks in prison after breaking TB regulations.

Mark Edward Payne, of the Old Smithy, Brynford, Holywell had pleaded guilty to animal health offences and was sentened on November 1 at Mold Crown Court.

The court heard Payne moved 40 cattle owned by his wife Linda Payne illegally from Waen y Brodlas, Brynford to another holding at Caerwys Hall without having them pre-movement tested for bovine TB.

Officers from Flintshire Animal Health Team had established that Payne had moved the cattle in September 2011 from Waen y Brodlas to Caerwys Hall, and then in October 2011 he moved them back to Waen y Brodlas without the animals being subjected to the required TB pre movement testing. When questioned Payne had told officers that he had done the pre-movement testing within the last 60 days and that he had complied with the legal requirements to prevent the spread of the disease. However, on investigation this was found not to be the case.

While sentencing Judge Merfyn Hughes QC stated Mr Payne had chosen to "ignore instructions" by Trading Standards Officers and has a history of "consistently flouting the regulations".

It was heard in court that Mr Payne had previously been found guilty of offences in 2004 under the Trade Descriptions Act regarding applying a false description to a bull that he had sold, and in 2010 he was found guilty of a further five offences including failure to dispose of a bovine carcass and breaching a TB Restriction Notice for which he received a 36 week prison sentence suspended for 18 months.

Councillor Kevin Jones, cabinet member for waste and public protection at Flintshire County Council said: "Bovine TB has a significant impact on agricultural production. This can have an effect on our food supplies and our rural communities. The majority of the farming community and those involved in dealing with cattle understand and respect the need to protect this important industry from this disease and its devastating effects on the health and welfare of livestock and the livelihood of those who are part of the industry."

The 42 week sentence consisted of 24 weeks of the previously suspended sentence, 16 weeks for the 2011 TB offences, plus two weeks for failing to surrender to the court while subject of an arrest warrant.

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on The Scottish Farmer on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis. If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules, which are available here.

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.