Banned farmer lucky to escape going to jail

By Mark Pritchett   |   Editorial manager   |
Saturday 1st February 2020 8:50 am
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(Photo by Paul Chard / Unsplash )

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A FARMER who was banned from keeping animals has narrowly avoided jail after admitting farming a flock of over 500 sheep.

Philip Govier, 74, from Willtown Farm, Clayhidon, was sentenced to 22 weeks in prison at Exeter Magistrates Court, suspended for 12 months, following a prosecution by Devon, Somerset and Torbay Trading Standards.

District Judge Matteson told the court that if it had not been for his poor health he would have gone straight to jail.

The court heard that Govier was banned from keeping farmed animals in 2014 after a conviction under the Animal Welfare Act 2006.

However, following a tip-off from the public and intelligence from the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) trading standards brought a new prosecution during which the court ordered the flock to be seized and sold to another farmer.

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