Farmer held after shooting dog

2009-12-11 00:00

A MOOI RIVER farmer was arrested for allegedly shooting at dogs that were chasing cattle on his farm yesterday morning.

Shandon V-Ranch owner Willem Verhoef will face charges of malicious damage to property and discharging a firearm after he allegedly shot and killed a dog at the farm.

According to Verhoef, three dogs were chasing his cattle and he shot at them to protect his cattle. “Three dogs were chasing a cow and a calf. I shot one of them and now I was arrested for that,” he said.

Verhoef said it is not the first time that his cattle have been chased by dogs. “This thing started in 2007. Cows have been bitten by dogs on my farm. What must I do? I can’t chase the dogs away from the cattle. I had no other recourse but to shoot the dogs to protect my cattle.”

In 2007, he charged tenant children with trespassing in a field stocked with cows, calves and bulls.

In 2008, some farm property was torched, allegedly by some of the farm dwellers and land claimants, who later threatened other workers on the farm

Previously Verhoef accused tenants of poisoning his cows and cutting fences more than 23 times.

He said tenants even blocked his access to the farm.

He said the tenants were offered 36 hectares (about 10% of the total farmland) by the previous owner.

However, on the day of signing the agreement, they refused the deal, saying they wanted more land.

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