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Man sentenced for string of animal cruelty offences


A man has today (Monday 11 October) received a suspended prison sentence and banned from owning animals for life after pleading guilty to several animal cruelty and animal welfare offences.

Humza Saleem, aged 23, was sentenced at St Albans Magistrates Court to 23 weeks' imprisonment, suspended for two years.

Investigations were launched by the police after a pig was found to have been killed by a dog - the second such attack in the area. Police investigating the scene found a clean black designer wallet which had been recently dropped in a muddy field. Saleem was identified through items in the wallet by police and bailed pending investigation.

During the subsequent investigation Saleem’s mobile was examined which revealed thousands of disturbing images and videos, depicting animal fights, foxes and pigs being killed by dogs and dogs of a banned breed being trained on a treadmill.

Hertfordshire Police reported the case to the CPS who then authorised Saleem to be charged with a number of animal cruelty offences. Saleem originally pleaded not guilty but changed his plea at an appearance at St. Albans Magistrates' Court on Friday 3 September.

Ashley Petchey of the CPS said: “This case demonstrates the lengths to which offenders will go to regardless of the risks to themselves, their animals and others in the wider community.

“The CPS worked closely with the police to build a strong case against Humza Saleem and we would like to thank Hertfordshire Police for their diligence and hard work during the investigation.

“Animals can be much loved members of our homes and communities, and we will continue to collaborate with the police to bring offenders of these disturbing crimes to justice.”

Notes to editors

  • Ashley Petchey is a Senior Crown Prosecutor in CPS East of England. 
  • Humza Saleem (D.O.B: (10/12, 1997) committed the crimes in Hertfordshire and Hounslow, London. 
  • Saleem was sentenced to 23 weeks' imprisonment suspended for 24 months for two counts of causing an animal fight to take place, two counts of cause unnecessary suffering to a protected animal, criminal damage, four counts of keeping/training an animal for use in connection with an animal fight and possessing or having custody of a prohibited Pitbull type dog
  • Saleem was sentenced to a ban on owning animals for life and a destruction order was issued for the dog owned by Saleem
  • Saleem was also ordered to pay £1584 in kenneling costs to Hertfordshire Police and £128 to the owner of the pig killed by Saleem's dog. He was also ordered to pay £85 in court costs
  • The CPS has a network of specialist wildlife prosecutors including a national wildlife crime lead prosecutor. 
  • The review of the evidence was carried out in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors.

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