Tipster Receives Gbp 1,000 PETA Reward After Killers Of Rare Birds Are Convicted

For Immediate Release:
30 November 2010

Sandra Smiley 0207 357 9229, ext 229; [email protected]

London – An anonymous informant has been awarded £1,000 by PETA for contributing information that led to the arrest and conviction of two teens who beat and decapitated 16 rare birds at East Harnham Farm, near Salisbury, in 2009. The birds included red-breasted geese and black swans as well as other birds such as chickens and ducks. According to reports, the perpetrators, then aged 15 and 16, pleaded guilty at Salisbury Youth Court to criminal damage and cruelty to animals. The 15-year-old was sent to a young offenders’ institution for four months and banned from keeping animals for three years, and the 16-year-old was given a 12-month referral order and ordered to pay £300 in compensation.

“It’s too late for the 16 birds who suffered a terrifying and painful death, but nabbing these young perpetrators at an early age and treating their actions as the crimes they are could deter them from committing additional crimes against animals – or people”, says PETA’s Suzanne Barnard. “Animal abusers are cowards who take their issues out on the most defenceless beings available to them.”

According to law enforcement agencies and leading mental health professionals, perpetrators of violent acts against animals are often repeat offenders who pose a serious threat to both human and non-human animals.

History shows that serial rapists and murderers often have a history of cruelty to animals. Violent criminal Steven Barker, child-killers Mary Bell, Robert Thompson and Jon Venables and serial murderers Ian Huntley, Thomas Hamilton (Dunblane massacre), Fred West and Ian Brady all started on their violent paths by deliberately harming animals. Raoul Moat, the gunman responsible for shooting his ex-girlfriend and killing her new partner and later himself, also reportedly had a history of abusing animals.

Upon request, the tipster’s identity is being withheld. To learn more about PETA’s work, please visit