$53,000 fine for neglect of goats

CONFRONTING footage of a goat kid barely clinging to life as it cowered among the rotting carcasses of its flock was played to Toowoomba Magistrates Court during an animal neglect case.

Department of Forestry and Fisheries inspectors found 100-150 feral goat carcasses, in decaying states, in paddocks around the Abedoar Abattoir at Oakey in February, 2012. The goats' carer, Lindsay William Taylor, 61, on Monday pleaded guilty to four counts of breach of duty of care to an animal as a director and four counts of feeding animal matter or contaminated matter to stock.

DFF barrister Alastair McDougall said a complaint was made to the RSPCA on February 2, after a large number of neglected animals was seen at the abattoir's Oakey Kelvinhaugh Rd property. He said department inspectors found live and dead goats that appeared to not have any food.

There were 153 live goats and 28 cattle. The animals, as well as sheep, were not segregated into different paddocks.

He said the animals had access to industrial bins, some of which had animal remains. The court heard Taylor was the director of Taya Country Meats, which had engaged the abattoir for the slaughter of the stock.

Defence lawyer Scott Lynch said his client was not an owner or manager at the facility. He said his client had brought the feral goats to the abattoir at the request of its administrators, SV Partners, after its owners had filed for bankruptcy. Taylor's responsibility as the primary carer for the animals was contended.

Magistrate Bruce Schemioneck fined Taylor $53,000 and did not record a conviction against him.

Topics:  animal cruelty animal welfare courts