Farmer disqualified after death of horse

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A woman has been disqualified from owning horses for a year, sentenced to 100 hours community work, and ordered to pay vet fees of $498.00 after her horse, an elderly Chestnut Gelding, starved to death.

Alicia Victoria Keppel, 53, appeared in the Hamilton District Court for sentencing on one animal welfare charge, after the case was brought to court by the Ministry for Primary Industries.

MPI Animal Welfare and National Animal Identification and Tracing compliance regional manager, Brendon Mikkelsen, says it was serious offending.

"The horse was Ms Keppel’s responsibility and she failed to provide proper care and sufficient food for it. For a long period of time she didn’t check on the horse.”

Animal Welfare Inspectors visited Ms Keppel’s property in the North Waikato area, on February 22, 2020, after a complaint from a member of the public about an emaciated horse.

When the Animal Welfare Inspectors arrived they found the horse had died overnight.

"Ms Keppel’s horse would have suffered significant distress. It was extremely emaciated, and starved to death.

"In New Zealand, everyone must take responsibility for animal welfare. We encourage any member of the public who is aware of animal ill-treatment or cruelty to report it to the MPI animal welfare complaints freephone 0800 00 83 33."

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Posted on 31-05-2021 21:24 | By The Sage

One year is not long enough. She should never have animals again. No excuse for that at all. I hope she doesn’t have children....

What a moron!

Posted on 31-05-2021 17:59 | By Ben Dover

This vile excuse for a human being should never be in control of any animal/s again!

No deterrent!

Posted on 31-05-2021 15:14 | By

What a soft punishment. When will the Courts in NZ toughen up and start dishing out sentences which will act as a deterrent for any future would-be animal abusers?! She should have been banned for life from keeping ANY animal and fined at the very least, $10,000. As for the 100 community service - I can live with that - would prefer a custodial sentence but that’s probably not going to happen in cases like this. Well, I hope this woman feels hard and proud with what she’s absolute disgrace.