Puppy farmer may be sued by animal charity for cost of saving dogs | UK | News

Millionaire Christopher Gorman, 54, was convicted of nine animal cruelty charges after 45 dogs were seized from his home.

The SSPCA is now considering a highly unusual legal action to recover the costs it has incurred looking after the dogs that survived their ordeal.

Gorman, from Plains, near Airdrie, Lanarkshire, made a fortune from his dealings in property rental, and has assets of £1.2million, according to Crown officials. 

The charity has yet to make a final decision on whether to go ahead with the proposed legal action amid concerns from some senior SSPCA figures that such a bid could be costly, potentially unsuccessful and might alienate the public.

Raising the civil action would cost the charity around £30,000 – and there are concerns it could put off donors upset the body was using public money to mount expensive legal cases when there were no guarantees it would win.

Gorman escaped with just a £500 fine last month – while the Scottish Society For The Prevention of Cruelty To Animals was left with the enormous vets’ bill after taking in dozens of his ill and dying puppies.

Gorman bought puppies from Lithuania and England before selling them on to unsuspecting buyers.

He kept the dogs in appalling conditions at his five-bedroom home.

When the SSPCA swooped following a tip-off from the public, many of the dogs were found to be in a poor state of health.

Sadly, 13 of them were so ill they had to be put down.

One dog needed veterinary care costing a total of £10,000 in order to save its life. 

In total, the charity’s inspectors confiscated 45 dogs in a series of raids.

This put a huge strain on the charity’s available kennel space.

Gorman was found guilty in May at Airdrie Sheriff Court of nine charges and was banned from keeping animals for 10 years. 

The breeds of dogs he would sell – for between £500 and £750 – included the increasingly popular French and British bulldogs, which normally fetch at least £1,000 each.

SSPCA Chief Superintendent Mike Flynn said: “We are currently considering all options available to us with regards to addressing the costs associated with this investigation. By the time of sentencing the care of the dogs seized from -Gorman had cost the society around £375,000.

“However, this cost is the price we pay to ensure the safety of the dogs we seized, and also the prevention of further suffering of future dogs that may have come into Gorman’s hands.”

The SSPCA began seizing dogs as far back as October…

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