A crematorium owner who claimed he’d cremated a horse but actually failed to do so has been fined and given a suspended prison sentence.
Allan McMaster, 52, owner of Swan Pit Crematorium in Gnosall, Staffordshire, pleaded guilty at North Staffs Magistrates Court yesterday (October 24) to making a false representation, as well as three animal by-product offences involving three other horses.
He was given 12 weeks imprisonment, suspended for 12 months, as well as 250 hours of unpaid work, 15 days of rehabilitation to deal with his behaviour and a fine of nearly £2000.
McMaster has previous convictions for similar offences in 2015, when Staffordshire County Council’s Trading Standards Animal Health team visited the property with a search warrant and found he was duping customers into thinking their pets had been cremated, when they were actually being stored in freezers at the crematorium.
County Councillor Gill Heath, Cabinet Member for Communities and the Environment said:
“Mr McMaster was in a position of trust, and he has let down the people he was supposed to be helping. I think it is clear that the business being operated by McMaster has had serious issues; nevertheless, there is no excuse for betraying the trust of customers, and failing to keep accurate records.
“We will also seek to prosecute people who flout the law and don’t adhere to regulations.”