Scottish farmer fined £550 for punching sheep in the face – Totally Vegan Buzz
Scottish farmer fined £550 for punching sheep in the face
Image: SCOTTISH SPCA

A Scottish farmer has admitted to animal cruelty after he was caught on camera punching two sheep in the face.

William Brown, of Herbertshaw Farm in Penicuik, was exposed by animal rights group PETA – who set up undercover cameras in his farm. 

The shocking footage reveals brutal treatment of animals, and following an investigation by the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) the farmer was fined £550 under Section 19 of Scotland’s Animal Health and Welfare Act 2006.

He admitted causing unnecessary suffering to two animals in his farm south of Edinburgh in 2018.

Scottish farmer fined £550 for punching sheep in the face
Image: SCOTTISH SPCA

Warning

The SPCA said it hoped the sentence would serve as a warning against animal abuse. 

The Society’s chief inspector John Chisholm said: “This is a serious case of animal cruelty by an experienced farmer. He will be fully aware that sheep experience fear and can perceive humans as a threat.

“Violently lashing out at the sheep will spread fear amongst the rest of the flock.

“We would expect anyone involved in the rearing of livestock for commercial purposes to have the highest standards of welfare and treatment.”

The charity expressed disappointment that the farmer was not banned from keeping animals following the trial. 

“But we hope this will serve as a warning that this behaviour is unacceptable and we will fully investigate any reports of cruelty towards livestock,” Chisholm said.

Widespread abuse

Animal rights groups said the investigation is indicative of widespread animal abuse in the meat and dairy industries. 

PETA said the footage showed “flagrant cruelty” to sheep.

“This is a huge milestone – but it’s just the tip of the iceberg,” the group said in a statement.

“It’s routine in the Scottish wool industry to kick, beat, and stamp on sheep, but so far, only one person has been charged with cruelty to animals.”

Farmers have claimed that abuse is not widespread and argued that businesses make animal welfare a priority. 

Share this article to reveal how animals are treated in the meat industry.

Published by Oli Gross

Oli’s career and personal ethical values both help shape his reporting of the diverse world of veganism. His background is in local newspaper and magazine journalism, and his work has included reporting court cases, celebrity interviews, business analysis, food and drink features and government legislation.

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