Man claims he was taking stolen sheep to town
A farmer’s entire ewe goat population was stuffed into one man’s trunk and stolen last weekend, a crime for which the perpetrator has ended up with a seven-month prison sentence.
While Chief Magistrate Rechanne Browne had to sentence Curt Nanton on the charge placed against him, that he had stolen three ewe goats worth $950, the Senior Prosecutor Adolphus Delplesche commented that if the defendant had been charged under the Praedial Larceny Act, the penalty could have been stiffer.
The prosecutor stated that if the defendant had been charged under the Act he would have been able to ask for the vehicle to be forfeited.
The Chief Magistrate also stated that she really wished they (the police) would use the Act now.
Regardless, the 42-year-old defendant from Owia did not get a slap on the wrist for his livestock thievery.
The court had heard that between Sunday morning and Monday morning farmer Grenville Jeweth, 51 years of Owia, missed three of his goats. Subsequently, the animals came into the custody of the police after they were found in the back of the defendant’s truck when he was pulled over.
Nanton also spoke for himself, saying “All I have to tell you…I’m sorry I do this,” and he explained that the devil is busy.
Already, the prosecutor seemed unconvinced, commenting “Poor Satan”.
“I do something wrong. I do what I ain supposed to do,” Nanton admitted.
The defendant stated that from the time he was arrested on Monday “my mother want throw my girlfriend out the house”.
“I not getting into that part…not me and domestic situation,” Browne told him.
However, when prosecutor Delplesche rose to examine Nanton, he asked the accused if his mother was alive.
The defendant answered straight away that his mother had died last Christmas Eve.
The prosecutor then pointed out to him that he had told the court that she was kicking his girlfriend out the house.
“Sorry bout that…mi sister,” Nanton corrected himself.
The prosecutor asked him what he was going to do with the sheep, and he answered that he was carrying them to town.
“For what… sheep exhibition?” Delplesche asked him.
“I don’t have no idea,” Nanton replied.
“Well I have an idea you know. I have an idea of where you must go,” the prosecutor continued, “and that is jail.”
“Praedial Larceny in this country…the farmers, livestock farmers, root crop farmers…they are bawling. And we must put a stop to this,” he commented to the Magistrate.
“You cannot go and take the man three sheep…,” he said, asking what the sheep were being taken into town for.
“Eh, you was going sell them? So what you were gonna do…carry them pasture…in town?…No man,” Deplesche stated.
With a final note that the farmers must be protected, he recommended a custodial sentence.
The magistrate said that she was concerned that Nanton had taken all of the man’s goats, to which the defendant responded that he did not know those were Jeweth’s only goats.
“So you just walk with what you see…?” she asked him. “You operating so callously. You don’t even care. You see sheep, you pick up sheep,” Browne told him.
From the start, Browne began with a custodial sentence. She felt the crime was a serious one, noting “this was all of the man’s sheep you took in one go.”
The planning and execution was “all you” she told him, and commented that we “really have to be mindful of the persons who are working hard with their livestock.
She told Nanton that the three sheep are what the man owned, and although it may not seem significant in worth, there is great value otherwise attached to them.
However, the animals are alive and have been recovered by the police, and Nanton pleaded guilty at the first opportunity.
Therefore, the calculations ended at seven months imprisonment.
A woman accompanied by a small child were outside the court when Nanton was being taken away entreating him to behave himself when “you go round there.”