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  • Kurri Kurri puppy killer Nathan Thompson receives life ban, sentence to come

    2019 - 03.21

    Puppy killer receives life ban, full sentence to come Nathan Thompson (right) leaving Newcastle Local Court on Thursday.
    Nanjing Night Net

    Nathan Thompson (right) leaving Newcastle Local Court on Thursday.

    Nathan Thompson (right) leaving Newcastle Local Court on Thursday.

    Nathan Thompson (right) leaving Newcastle Local Court on Thursday.

    Nathan Thompson (right) leaving Newcastle Local Court on Thursday.

    Nathan Thompson (right) leaving Newcastle Local Court on Thursday.

    Nathan Thompson (right) leaving Newcastle Local Court on Thursday.

    TweetFacebookPuppy killer pleads guilty

    CONVICTED puppy killer Nathan Thompson has been banned from having anything to do with animals for life after pleading guilty to an additional nine cruelty charges relating to the ‘‘massacre’’ of most of a litter of bull-terrier cross pups.

    Widespread public outrage over the brutal killing of nine of an 11 puppy litter at Kurri Kurri earlier this month prompted heightened security on Thursday, with the matter moved from East Maitland District Court to the more secure Newcastle Supreme Court building.

    Magistrate Ian Cheetham ordered an ‘‘exclusion zone’’ be placed around the complex, with Newcastle City police, security guards and court sheriffs posted outside and only media and a few members of Thompson’s family allowed inside.

    Slumped in his seat, Thompson kept his head down as he listened to prosecutors lay nine fresh charges against him and make an application to ban him from having anything to do with animals for the rest of his life.

    Thompson was previously prohibited from being around animals for 10 years after pleading guilty to four charges on March13, and on Thursday defence solicitor David Fleming made no objection to that order being extended indefinitely.

    ‘‘I make an order that Mr Thompson is not to purchase or acquire or take possession or custody of any animal during his life,’’ Magistrate Cheetham said.

    Thompson also pleaded guilty to eight more animal cruelty charges, taking the total to nine – one for each of the nine puppies he bashed to death in bushland.

    He also previously pleaded guilty to causing prolonged suffering to the surviving puppy, Lucky, and resisting arrest.

    The pups were first advertised for sale on March5 on the classifieds website Gumtree. When they had not sold by March11, the owner took the animals to Mr Thompson at his home because he had sold puppies in the past, court documents stated.

    Thompson put the 11 puppies in the back seat of his car about 4.45pm and drove to McLeod Road at Kurri Kurri. He drove some way down a dirt track and found a large brick in nearby scrub.

    He removed the first puppy from the rear of his vehicle and began striking it in the head with the brick. The puppy died from its injuries and Thompson threw it into the bush, before repeating the process on the others.

    As Thompson continued to bludgeon the puppies, a witness walking his own dogs heard a number of them yelping.

    ‘‘[The witness] has observed the accused holding one of the puppies down with his left hand while repeatedly bludgeoning it with a brick held in his right hand,’’ court documents stated.

    ‘‘[The witness] momentarily watched in horror as the accused removed yet another puppy from his car and proceeded to strike the animal four times in the head. ‘‘At this point [the witness] has run towards the accused, trying to coax his own dogs away from the massacre.’’

    Once Thompson noticed the accused he threw the puppy into the bush and drove off at high speed, court documents stated.

    He took off with five of the puppies still alive and later told police he killed four of them in bushland off Northcote Street at Kurri Kurri. The remaining living puppy was given away to a family at Cessnock.

    When police came to arrest him, Thompson resisted before he was subdued.

    Outside court Thompson was mobbed by media and flocks of animal welfare campaigners calling for him to be jailed. He will know his fate on May 4 when he returns for sentencing.

    Lucky, who survived the killing of his litter.

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