The National Council of SPCAs (NSPCA) welcomes the guilty judgment against Dr E Alberts for the mutilation of a monkey. Dr Alberts was found guilty on counts of animal cruelty, obstruction, and illegal possession of an indigenous wild animal.

In October 2012, the NSPCA was made aware that Dr Alberts was in possession of a vervet monkey that had had three of its limbs amputated. It was reported that the animal was in pain and distress and a warrant was obtained.

On arrival, the NSPCA Inspectors were refused entry onto the property and required police intervention to gain access. The Inspectors were further obstructed after gaining access, and only after threats of arrest, Dr Alberts begrudgingly complied.

A female vervet monkey was found in a cage in the bedroom of Dr Alberts. The monkey’s two hind legs and one forearm had been amputated and she was dragging herself around with her remaining forearm. She also had a deep incision on her abdomen. The monkey was removed and taken to an experienced veterinarian for examination. It was decided by the veterinarian that euthanasia was necessary to end the monkey’s suffering and her body was sent for a post mortem.

Charges were laid in terms of the Animals Protection Act No 71 of 1962 for maiming, neglect, failure to administer pain medication, as well as obstruction and illegal possession of an indigenous wild animal. Dr Alberts was found guilty on all counts in the Nigel Magistrates Court on 4 March 2020. Sentencing is set for 18 March 2020 at 12h00.

The NSPCA reported this matter to the South African Veterinary Council (SAVC) and were advised that they would wait for the outcome of the case before taking action. The NSPCA expects the SAVC to now take action against Dr Alberts in light of this judgment.

“It has taken nearly eight years for justice to be served for the monkey that was so terribly abused at the hands of a veterinarian who, by their chosen profession, should have had the animal’s best interests at heart. The NSPCA will never give up on seeking justice, no matter how long the justice system takes – every animal, and each case, matters to us” said Meg Wilson of the National Council of SPCAs.

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