Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


SPCA v Joseph Rewha – Dog dragged behind car

SPCA v Joseph Rewha – Dog dragged behind car – Bay of Islands, 5/02/04.

Longest term of imprisonment ever handed down in animal welfare law in New Zealand.

An incident on 5th February 2004, where a dog was deliberately tied to the tow bar of a car and dragged along a country road at speeds of approximately 80 kph, had its sequel in the District Court at Kaikohe today.

Joseph Rewha, beneficiary, aged 52 years, or Rawhiti, Northland, had been charged with the Wilful Ill-Treatment of a dog and had previously entered a plea of guilty to the charge.

In sentencing Rewha to a term of 9 months imprisonment, Judge Russell Johnson said that animals were particularly vulnerable creatures. He said that the defendant’s actions showed that Rewha had clearly set out to torture the dog, which had done nothing more than obey its instincts to escape after it had been left tied up for several days while the defendant was on a drinking binge.

“Being a sad alcoholic, is no excuse”, said Judge Johnson.

Rewha was also disqualified from owning or exercising authority in respect of animals for a period of 7 years; and ordered to attend alcohol and drug abuse counselling.

SPCA prosecutor Jim Boyd, had earlier submitted that the act done by Rewha was not a case of a momentary act of anger or frustration, but a case of deliberate, sadistic and prolonged cruelty, calculated to cause the animal maximum terror and pain. Mr Boyd submitted that the sentence must be a denunciation of the defendant’s actions and that the denunciation must provide a clear and emphatic deterrent to others.

This sentence represents the longest term of imprisonment ever handed down for a case of animal cruelty, in New Zealand.

When spoken to after the sentencing, Mr Boyd said that it is hard to imagine a more deliberate act of torture toward an animal. He said he was pleased with the outcome and hoped the sentence would serve as a deterrent to others who would meter out cruelty to creatures that could not speak on their own behalf.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>


More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news