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----------------CALF SLAUGHTER.


CALF SLAUGHTER. Important Breccn Case At the Brecon Borough Police Court, on Monday, before the Mayor (Mr W. F. Parry deWinton"), Dr. Francis, Mr H. C. Rich, and Mr Wm. Williams, Charles Edward 'Blank, butcher of Castle street, Brecon, was charged with causing a calf to be slaughtered contrary to the Live Stock Sales Order, 1918, and Joseph Price, farmer, of Porthgwyn, Llanddew, was charged with permitting the slaughter. Mr Thompson, of Swansea, prosecuted for the Divisional Food Commissioner, and Mr E. P. Careless, of Llandrindod Wells, defended, and put in a plea of not guilty. In opening the case Mr Thompson quoted from the Live Stock Sales Order to show that a calf should not be slaughtered unless it was branded by an authorised person, and poiited out that Section III, which permitted immedi- ate slaughter in cases of accident or illness, applied to beasts and sheep and did not apply to calves. P.S. David Evans stated that on Friday, June 14th, he saw a calf being taken in a gambo to the slaughterhouse and in the afternoon went there and found that Mr Blank had just slaughtered it. It was not branded for slaughter and he told defendant he had com- mitted an offence. In reply Mr Blank said :— Price, Porthgwyn, came to me this morning and told me he had a calf tlt was not well and asked me to slaughter it. I told him to bring ,is it down and he had better see Price, the auctioneer. Later on I received a message that Price had sent the calf down and wanted me to slaughter it, and I said 'If it is fit for human consumption I wiii buy it r The defendant Price then came into the slaughter- house and witness asked him for an explanation. He answered I knew the calf would not live, so I sent it down to Blank to slaughter it." Cross-examined Everything was done quite I openly and there was no attempt at secrecy or concealment. I Mr W. J. Price, of Brecon, chairman of the Auctioneers' Committee for Breconshire and Radnorshire, and the "authoriiSed person" for trading at Brecon, said he met Mr Blank on the 14th June and defendant told him that Mr Price, Porthgwyn, had a calf which he panted to be slaughtered. Witness said he could not go out to see it that day and suggested that the J defendant Price should call at bis office, Witness was at the office afterwards, but Mr Price did not call. Witness did not brand the calf and gave no sanction for its slaughter. Gross-examined If he had seen the calf and been satisfied that it would not live.. very likely ¡ he would have branded it. He would have done it in the national interest in order not I to waste meat. Re-examined He considered this case came within the instruction as to casualty slaughter, j Mr Roy Parry gave evidence to show that I there was no call at Mr W. J. Price's office regarding the question of slaughtering the calf j within certain hours. For the defence Mr Careless contended that the exclusion of calves from the emergency slaughter section was an omission. If the defendant Price had allowed this calf to die he would have been guilty of wicked waste. Mr Blank gave evidence. He said that when he told 3Tr Price, the auctioneer, the circum- stances, the latter said No doubt it will be all-righr." As soon as- he could witness went to the slaughterhouse to see the calf, and it was in such a state it would soon have died; there- fore, without stopping to change his clothes, he killed it 4o save the meat for human food. He was not aw,'ire that calves were deluded from the emergency section uf the Order. He had not bought the calf when he killed it, and had no interest in it. Mr A. J. Cattell. M.R.C.V.S.. Brecon, stated that he examined the carcase of a heifer calf at the slaughterhouse on the afternoon of June 14th. The stomach was full of hair, which was acting as a mechanical obstruction, and if it had not been slaughtered the animal would soon have died. The meat was perfectly sound and fit for human food. The defendant Price also gave evidence sup- e porting Mr Blank's statement. He said he called at the office of Mr Price, the auctioneer, at about 8 o'clock, but Mr Price was not there. He did everything he could to' comply with the law, and his sole object in sending the calf for slaughter wa's to save meat for human food. After the magistrates had deliberated for a very long time in private, the Mayor said they considered there had been a technical breach of the Order, and they were going to dismiss the case with a very grave caution. The regula- tions were carefully framed—in spite of what Mr Careless said—and were specially framed to protect the calf and if any other case such as this came before them and was proved—even of a technical offence-they would deal very severely with it.


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