The Magistrates Court in Brisbane has concluded an enquiry into
the capacity of Geraldine Robertson to stand trial on 145 charges
under the Animal Care and Protection Act (2001). The Court found
that she was not fit to stand trial and has directed a permanent
stay of the proceedings on the grounds of her mental capacity.
The finding of “lack of capacity” prevents the RSPCA from taking
the prosecution further.
It was back in 2008 that the RSPCA seized 105 animals, mainly toy and standard poodles, from her property in Waterford. Following 3 years of court action, Geraldine Robertson was unsuccessful in recovering the animals and they were declared forfeited. Magistrate Strofield found the evidence before the court in the forfeiture proceedings readily led to the reasonable belief of the RSPCA Inspectors that it was necessary to seize the dogs to prevent them from being used in or becoming the subject of an animal welfare offence.
RSPCA’s Chief Executive Officer Mark Townend said that the ongoing legal proceedings had been a very trying matter for everyone involved.
“It’s a sad ending for everyone concerned - the complainant, the respondent and all those who were involved in caring for the 105 animals over such an extended period of time. The RSPCA is very grateful to the Court that allocated time to deal with this matter expeditiously and for all of the supporters who have cared for the seized animals and provided them with caring, permanent homes. RSPCA is particularly grateful for the assistance of our legal representatives throughout the series of proceedings.”
“The termination of the prosecution means that there is no finding of guilt or innocence and consequently no penalty. There has been no prohibition order issued regarding the possession of animals.”
The Court was told that the property has recently been granted a kennel licence by Logan City Council.