THE Plettenberg Bay dog-fighting trial resumes in the Knysna Regional Court today when the remaining six of 10 accused will face charges of contravening the Animal Protection Act.
The first convictions were earlier this year.
In July, Billy Marais, one of the men caught running pitbull fights at his farm at Ladywood, Plettenberg Bay, was sentenced to 18 months' correctional supervision. He was also fined R20000, half of it suspended for four years. Marais, who has left Plettenberg Bay, is required to do 288 hours of community service at the Krugersdorp SPCA.
Marais left Plettenberg Bay after his employers at a restaurant spoke out against his actions.
In May, three other men – Johannes (Fanie) Joubert of Johannesburg, Ferdinand Endeman of Somerset West and Anthony Blake of Plettenberg Bay – were convicted. Each was fined R15000 or 18 months in prison, of which R10 000 or 12 months were suspended for three years.
The remaining six accused – Peter Wall of Queenstown, Donald Wall of Port Elizabeth, Rudi Wall of Queenstown, Yorick Grobbelaar of East London, Anton van Blerk of East London and Owen "Budgee" Butler of East London – will appear today. The trial is set down for the week.
While conviction of Marais, in particular, was welcomed by Knysna Animal Welfare, spokesman Karel du Toit said cracking down on syndicates was extremely difficult.
Cape of Good Hope SPCA official Allan Perrins said it was hoped that evidence collected in other dog-fighting cases around the country could be introduced at the trial this week.