Six Wigan women prosecuted for illegally selling puppies

Six Wigan women are being separately prosecuted for illegally selling puppies.

Monday, 21st June 2021, 2:37 pm
Updated Monday, 21st June 2021, 2:38 pm

Under the terms of the 2006 Animal Welfare Act, anyone putting up animals for sale need first to obtain a licence.

The defendants are: 35-year-old Sarah Kennedy, of Warrington Road, Newtown; Sarah McLaughlin, 71, of Sale Lane, Tyldesley; Amy Kelly, 29, of Hope Street, Leigh; Emma Bradley, of Wardley Road, Tyldesley; 39-year-old Stacey Bell, of Hillcrest Avenue, Leigh; and Rachel Seddon of Lavender Road, Beech Hill.

All the offences are alleged to have happened for periods either last year, this year or both.

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A puppy
A puppy

Each woman faces two charges, the first being of selling puppies as pets without holding a licence (an offence under the Animal Welfare Act), and a second of giving the false impression that the sale was legal - a breach of the 2008 Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Act (which replaced the old Trades Description Act).

None of the defendants has yet to plead and an arrest warrant was issued by Wigan and Leigh magistrates when Seddon failed to attend her hearing.

Of the others, Kennedy’s case was adjourned to September 24, McLaughlin’s to July 14, both at Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court, Kelly’s to June 26, and both Bell and Bradley’s to June 23, all at Wigan Magistrates’ Court.

The Animal Welfare Act 2006 requires that anyone selling animals as pets, providing boarding for cats and dogs, and breeding dogs in the course of a business must obtain a licence from the local authority in whose area their premises are based. Before considering an application, a qualified officer or vet appointed by the council has to carry out an inspection which includes checking animals’ health and living conditions. If approved, a licence fee is then paid.

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