A family from Ireland was handed a jail sentence that roughly totaled 18 years for selling unwell puppies to unsuspecting clients.

The Cawley family reportedly ran a puppy farming ring but badly treated the canines that resulted in some of them not even reaching their new homes. Aside from that, there were also cases wherein deals were closed but the dogs would die not long after.

Per reports, the smuggling ring made more than £300,000 by scamming customers into buying the unwell animals that came with fraudulent vaccination documents.

Authorities raided a Traveller’s site in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire and seized 54 dogs that were immediately taken into the care of the RSPCA for treatment and rehabilitation. The animals were reportedly starved and kept in unhealthy cages.

The living conditions of the puppies were so bad that some of them were found in dark, cold pens that were not properly cleaned. There were others with nails sticking out and sharp metal mesh wires hanging.

Among the health issues that some of the puppies had included fur loss, ear infections and dental diseases. Others had bad infections and bloated abdomens from lack of food. Among the breeds of puppies kept there were cocker spaniels, Schnauzers, Chihuahuas, springer spaniels, Labradors, beagles and poodles

13 of the family members were arrested on Aug. 5 and their combined sentences totaled 18 years imprisonment. This was handed down by Judge Francis Sheridan at the Aylesbury Crown Court.

10 defendants pleaded guilty to fraud with nine of them also admitting animal welfare offenses. Three admitted to animal welfare charges. Seven of those accused were immediately handed jail terms of more than 18 years.

Six members of the Cawley family who were jailed include John Christopher Cawley, Joseph Cawley Sr., Margaret Cawley, Michael Cawley, Annalise Cawley and Joseph Cawley Jr.

Daniel Yeboah, John Paul O’Brien and Wendy O’Brien, Rebecca Hall and Austin Paice, reportedly acted as frontmen. They also placed a series of adverts under false names online to sell the puppies.

The court also ordered the immediate destruction of 10 seized mobile phones and forfeited £16,000 of seized cash. The money will be distributed to the victims of the puppy smuggling ring.

The dogs were cared for by the RSPCA and in foster homes and can now all be rehomed.

French Bulldog Image by Alexandr Ivanov from Pixabay

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