Badger baiter guilty of unspeakable cruelty

A SOUTH Wales badger baiter was indefinitely banned from owning dogs, after evidence of his violent hobby was captured on camera.

Christian Latcham Badger Baiting

Christian Latcham, 23, from Tonypandy, was today given a suspended five month sentence at Rhondda Magistrates’ Court after pleading guilty to two charges of two charges under the Animal Welfare Act and six charges under the Badger Act.

The court heard how, on being arrested in 2009 for a separate offence, Latcham had conspicuously tried to hide his mobile phone from officers.

When the police inspected the phone they found a number of gruesome images saved on it.

Geraint Richards, prosecuting, handed a number of the images over to the ruling magistrates and described them.

He said: “One of the photos depicts the defendant holding a dead badger aloft.

“His clothes and a black terrier are covered in blood.

“Another two of the photographs show a severed badger’s head.”

Clive Rees, defending, said the defendant lacked empathy and had limited social skills.

He said: “He has been unable to put himself in the place of the animals he was dealing with and to think and see through the things he was doing.”

Chairman of the bench, Mike Hanley, said the violent nature of Latcham’s crimes had made it difficult for the magistrates to impose a suitable punishment.

He said: “My colleagues and I are absolutely appalled a the evidence brought before us today.

“These were deliberate and unprovoked actions which speak of unspeakable cruelty.”

Latcham was also told he would have to serve 250 hours unpaid work and pay £1,000 costs.