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Animal cruelty charges dropped against Ontario veterinarian

November 03, 2017 - 11:26 AM

ST. CATHARINES, Ont. - All charges have been dropped against a St. Catharines, Ont., veterinarian who was facing 16 criminal counts of animal cruelty.

Skyway Animal Hospital owner Dr. Mahavir Rekhi was facing eight counts of causing unnecessary pain or suffering to an animal and eight counts of failing to provide suitable and adequate care for an animal.

A Crown lawyer told St. Catharines court Friday that the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals started the investigation and received a warrant without a complaint.

For that reason, the Crown says Rekhi should not have been charged regardless of public outrage surrounding the case and since the College of Veterinarians of Ontario already took disciplinary action that should be all he gets.

The college launched an investigation after four former employees filed a complaint about Rekhi's treatment of animals in his care, and they submitted a dozen surveillance videos as evidence of the animal abuse.

OSPCA officer Kevin Strooband with the Lincoln County Humane Society says the media alerted him to videos and he acted.

Strooband told radio station CKTB the situation is comparable to a police officer who would launch an investigation after stumbling across a body.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2017
The Canadian Press

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