Animals kept in "appalling conditions" along the Brussels ring seized

Police have raided premises in Dilbeek, outside Brussels, to conduct an operation targeting the abuse of animals.  Fifty animals were discovered being kept in what are described as “appalling circumstances” and were removed.  The owner has denied any wrong doing.

In all fifteen sheep, six deer, three goats, two lambs and 29 chickens, turkeys, geese and ducks were taken away from the property located along the outer Brussels orbital ring road.

Michaël Devoldere, spokesman for animal welfare minister Weyts (Flemish nationalist), speaks of appalling scenes: "There were animal cadavers in an advanced state of decomposition all over the place.  If people believe you can get away with animal abuse like this is Flanders you are mistaken."

The property's owner is a gentleman from Anderlecht (Brussels), who works at a butcher's.  He has denied all wrong doing: "I purchase lean animals and fatten them up before I sell them.  They are regularly visited by a vet, who checks the animals.  I also have a licence to build a shed.  With regard to the cadavers I simply hadn't had the time to take them away."

The animals have now been taken to a local animal welfare centre. 

Public prosecutors in Brussels and Halle-Vilvoorde are on the case and the matter is likely to end up in the courts.