Expert witness called in to defend farmer Eric Moss, charged with causing suffering to his cows

GLOSSY
PIC SIMON PARKER
Eric Moss cattle farmer at Farnham.

GLOSSY PIC SIMON PARKER Eric Moss cattle farmer at Farnham. - Credit: Archant

A leading livestock vet has given evidence in the defence of a farmer accused of mistreating dozens of his cattle.

Eric Moss, aged 72, is facing 19 allegations involving Botany Farm, in Farnham, near Saxmundham.

ARP Farms, of Sible Hedingham, near Halstead, of which Moss is a director, is also accused of ten of the offences.

Eight of the charges against both Moss and ARP Farms involve causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal. ARP Farms is also facing two charges in relation to its duty under the Animal Welfare Act 2006.

Moss is also accused of three offences involving his duty under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and a further eight charges of failing to comply with regulations. He denies all the charges.


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Dr Anthony Andrews was examining pictures taken of cattle on Moss’ farm which Trading Standards said showed them to be malnourished.

However he said he “could not agree” with the judgement by a prosecution witness, using the photos presented, that the animals were suffering or not being fed properly.

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Trading standards officers visited Botany Farm on four occasions in 2013: February 19. February 26, March 23, and May 17.

During those visits there were alleged to have been issues with cattle not being sheltered from the weather, not being provided with sufficient food and not having a well-drained lying area.

Dr Andrews had also visited the farm, but in 2015.

Another witness, farmer Timothy Haste, was a neighbour of Moss who occasionally helped him on his farm.

In one example of a cow with a swollen jaw Mr Haste said he had been present when it was examined by a vet giving the herd a TB injection.

He said the vet had examined the animal in question and said it was fine and needed no further treatment.

The trial has been adjourned until August for summing up and the verdict.

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