The last man to front court on charges related to the butchering of a live cow at a cattle yard outside Darwin has been sentenced
The last man to front court on charges related to the butchering of a live cow at a cattle yard outside Darwin has been sentenced

Man guilty of ‘stealing meat off live cow’

THE last man to front court on charges related to the butchering of a live cow at a cattle yard outside Darwin has been sentenced to 150 hours of community work.

Anthony Spencer, 34, appeared before Darwin Local Court Chief Judge Elizabeth Morris on Tuesday and pleaded guilty to stealing two legs and a backstrap of a live Brahman cow, the property of Australian Agricultural Company, on July 20 last year.

Spencer's lawyer Nicola MacCarron, said her client wanted nothing more to do with his co-offenders.

"They proposed going for a ride," she said.

"He concedes that he was there and part of it.

"He says he didn't actually butcher it.

"He will not associate with these men, because they're not the kind of people he wants to associate with again."

Ms MacCarron said Spencer co-operated with police and identified some of his co-offenders.

Spencer spent 33 days behind bars after not showing up to court in December.

She said Spencer had not been in trouble with the law for years, and sending him back to jail would be pointless.

Co-offenders Angela Wood, 24, and Roy Young, 25, also pleaded guilty to stealing charges while the case against a fourth man, Glen Spack Petherick, 46, collapsed when it emerged animal cruelty charges were laid outside a six month time limit.

Wood was sentenced to three months jail for her role in the offending, which Judge Elisabeth Armitage described in September as "very different than the normal stealing that comes before this court".

Pastoralists discovered the cow, still alive, with a leg and back strap missing and shot it to put it out of its misery.

It had been stunned with the blunt edge of an axe before being butchered, but later came-to.

The group later returned and Young, the front seat passenger in the Toyota LandCruiser the group were riding in, yelled "I want meat, I want meat" before the pastoralists left the area in fear for their safety.

The dead cow's rear left leg was then lopped off, and the four made off with the meat.

The pastoralists later told police they had never seen an animal in such distress, although all of the aggravated animal cruelty charges laid over the incident were withdrawn.