Animal Equality disappointed by lenient sentence for dairy worker who violently beat cows and young calves

United Kingdom
In December 2016 Animal Equality filmed a worker on a Somerset dairy farm kicking and punching nursing cows and throwing newborn calves on the floor. Today he received a mere 12 week suspended prison sentence, £415 of court costs and 150 hours of community service. He is also disqualified from working with farmed animals for only 2 years.

The undercover investigation, which came on the back of a tip-off from a local resident, revealed multiple incidents of violence in just one day, including:

  • repeatedly kicking young calves to make them stand up
  • aggressively twisting cows’ tails and repeatedly slamming metal gates into them
  • pinning calves to the floor and shouting obscenities in their face
  • repeatedly kicking and slapping nursing cows
  • violently throwing small calves to the floor


We are extremely disappointed that this dairy farm worker has not been sent to prison for the disgusting attacks on vulnerable cows and calves revealed by our investigation. Or given a lifetime ban from working with animals. Anything less than a custodial sentence is wholly inadequate punishment for these disturbing acts of cruelty.

This case highlights the dangerous lack of oversight and complete absence of independent, unannounced inspections which leave all farmed animals at risk of abuse and suffering. Without our investigation, this worker would still be beating those poor animals today.



This is the second time that farm workers in England have been convicted of cruelty as a result of Animal Equality’s investigations. In 2012 two workers were filmed beating piglets to death with a metal bar on Harling Farm in Norfolk. Both men pleaded guilty to cruelty charges and one was sent to prison for 18 weeks. In September 2016 three farm workers in Spain were convicted for beating pigs with metal bars and stabbing them with swords as a result of footage released by Animal Equality.

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