Farmer fined for suffering of piglets
A County Down farmer has received a two-month suspended sentence and been fined £1,400 after he was convicted over cruelty to sows and piglets.
Nigel John Foster, of Whiterock Road in Killinchy, was convicted at Newtownards Court of eight animal welfare charges, according to a statement by the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD).
He was banned from keeping livestock for two years and received a two-month custodial sentence, suspended for two years, and fined £1,400 plus costs.
Foster was convicted of permitting unnecessary suffering to a sow and permitting unnecessary pain or distress to five piglets.
He was also convicted on three counts of failing to provide access to an adequate water supply, two of failing to provide access to a well-maintained lying area with dry bedding and one count of failing to provide pigs with a wholesome diet.
A DARD spokesman said: "The Department gives high priority to the welfare of animals and operates a vigorous enforcement policy to ensure full compliance of regulatory requirements.
"Any breaches are investigated thoroughly and offenders prosecuted as necessary."