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Former darts champion known as 'Snake Man' banned from keeping animals

Published 13/04/2016

Steve Alker won the Welsh Open in 1998
Steve Alker won the Welsh Open in 1998

A former darts champion and his wife have been banned from keeping animals for 10 years after their pets were found living in squalor at their home.

One time Welsh Open winner Steve Alker, whose entrance music was Welcome To The Jungle by Guns N Roses, was summoned to appear before magistrates after a dog, five cats and a hamster were found living in atrocious conditions.

RSPCA officials said the 52-year-old - known by the nickname "Snake Man" - also mistreated a snake by not providing it with proper heating.

Alker and wife Natalie, 45, later both admitted they failed to ensure their pets were provided with a suitable environment.

Following the conclusion of the couple's court case last week, the RSPCA has now released photographs of the Alkers' former home in Pontyberem, Carmarthenshire.

Inspector Keith Hogben said the inside of the property was disgusting.

He said: "There were months worth of faeces in every room.

"These poor animals were living in an environment that was completely unsuitable for them. The conditions were appalling."

Llanelli Magistrates Court confirmed Steve Alker pleaded guilty to five charges relating to animal welfare offences between October 23 and December 18 of last year.

A spokeswoman added Natalie pleaded guilty to three offences between the same period.

The Alkers, who now live in Llanelli, were both given a 12 months community order with 70 hours of unpaid work.

They were also disqualified from keeping animals for 10 years and each ordered to pay £300 court costs and a £60 victim surcharge.

Inspector Hogben added the Alkers' pets had been taken in by the RSPCA and were looking for new homes.

According to website Darts Database, Steve Alker won the Welsh Open in 1998 and also reached the last 16 of the PDC World Championships in 2006.

He also lost out in the latter stages of the 2005 UK Open to darts legend Phil "The Power" Taylor.

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