Fife: 21-year-old charged in con­nec­tion with re­leas­ing live­stock from two farms

The Courier & Advertiser (Angus and The Mearns Edition) - - NEWS - Craig smith

To­day will be mostly dry with some spells of sun­shine. At times it could be cloudy and there will some fresh­en­ing winds.

A man has been charged in con­nec­tion with the re­lease of buf­falo and horses from two farms in Fife ear­lier this month, po­lice have con­firmed.

An ap­peal for in­for­ma­tion was launched fol­low­ing the in­ci­dent at the Buf­falo Farm and Shawsmill Sta­bles on the out­skirts of Kirk­caldy on March 4, with CCTV footage ap­pear­ing to show a man re­leas­ing the an­i­mals from their en­clo­sures.

More than 120 buf­falo and sev­eral horses were able to roam free as a re­sult, al­though very few made it to ar­eas where mo­torists may have been put at risk.

A num­ber of horses suf­fered in­juries af­ter slip­ping on ice as they made their way on to the main road how­ever, while the stress of the or­deal caused one buf­falo to give birth to a calf dan­ger­ously early.

Fol­low­ing ap­peals from the farm own­ers for in­for­ma­tion on so­cial me­dia, a man sub­se­quently came for­ward to con­fess what he had done and apol­o­gised in per­son, with the mat­ter left in the hands of po­lice.

Po­lice Scot­land re­vealed yes­ter­day a 21-year-old man has been charged in re­la­tion to the in­ci­dent in the early hours of March 4, and a re­port is to be sent to the procu­ra­tor fis­cal.

It has not yet been di­vulged what the man has been charged with, but he is ex­pected to ap­pear at Kirk­caldy Sher­iff Court at a later date.

The CCTV footage showed a man un­cou­pling gates and stag­ger­ing around the farms in ques­tion, and at one stage the per­son could be seen fall­ing over.

Steven Mitchell, who runs the Buf­falo Farm, later said that the man had been to see him in per­son and had ex­pressed “gen­uine re­morse”.

“I don’t feel it is ap­pro­pri­ate to name and shame the per­son – they have to live with the dam­age they have caused and they are very aware their ac­tions have caused a lot of pain and dis­tress,” he said at the time.


Pic­ture: Steven Brown.

The in­ci­dent ear­lier this month is said to have caused the an­i­mals stress.

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