The case of a man who was before Athy District Court for charges of animal cruelty to horses was adjourned until December 11 next.
Albert Lynch, with an address listed as The Willows, Kildangan, Monasterevin, was charged on November, 6, 2009 with animal cruelty.
The court heard that the defendant’s matters are now on the “straight and narrow”. “He is a man of advanced years,” his solicitor Conal Boyce said.
“Matters are now entirely on the straight and narrow. He was overwhelmed by the number of horses he had and he couldn’t turn them away. ”
Judge Desmond Zaidan said there was a risk that the defendant might ‘go back to old behaviour’.
The defendant, who took the stand, told the court that he might keep two horses on his land but that he had plans with “Done Deal” to sell the remaining ten mares and five colts.
“I might keep a stallion for service,” he said.
Chief Welfare Officer with the Irish Horses Welfare Trust, Carrie Keogh, said that if the number of horses rise in the defendant’s care the “welfare goes down”.
“It cost us nearly E17,000 to care for dying horses on his land,” she said. “It is a serious case. If he get two stallions it will increase his numbers.” Judge Desmond Zaidan told the defendant that he was thinking about banning him from keeping horse.
“I’ll give you time to sell the horses,” he said. “I will adjourn the case until December. You should not in a position to have a commercial enterprise. Do I ban him from keeping horses for the rest of his life?”
Inspector Jim Doyle told the court that it would be “safe enough” if the defendant can keep one or two horses “as pets but not for breeding”.
The defendant’s daughter who was also in court agreed that he would look after then in future.
Judge Zaidan said the defendant can keep two as long as they are well looked after while the rest must be disposed off by December 11 next.