Detectives in the state’s north have arrested and charged a farmer with cattle theft and animal cruelty offences.
Investigators from the Richmond Police District’s Rural Crime Prevention Team allege that on Tuesday 21 May 2019, a 35-year-old farmer mustered his cattle and identified amongst his herd, cows, calves and a bull, belonging to his neighbour.
Police allege the man returned the cows and bull but kept the five calves, cutting out large parts of their ears with scissors to remove their earmark identifications.
He allegedly affixed his own electronic ear tags to the calves and represented the animals as his own to a livestock exchange at Casino, for sale.
Several people observed the injured animals and reported the matter to police, who confirmed ownership of the cattle through DNA samples.
Around midday today (Tuesday 18 June 2019), police attended cattle sale yards at Casino where they arrested the farmer.
He was taken to the Casino Police Station and charged with steal cattle, commit an aggravated act of cruelty upon an animal, alter/remove permanent identifier, not complete a National Vendors Declaration accurately, apply identifier without consent of owner and fail to return impounded livestock to owner.
The man has been released on bail, ordered to appear in the Casino Local Court on Thursday 4 July 2019.