Plymouth couple admit breeding puppies illegally

A married couple has given permission to breed puppies without a license.

The 53-year-old Victoria and the 52-year-old Marcellus Weaver could now be prohibited from keeping or at least trading dogs.

She also pleaded guilty to telling lies to sell puppies such as the Poodle, Spaniel, and Shih-Tzu on the Gumtree, Pets for Homes, and Free Ads websites.

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But their attorney told Plymouth Crown Court that they were not dealers – and only sold puppies when they had three litters over 12 months.

Plymouth City Council still disagrees on the lies Victoria Weaver told, and any attempt to ban the couple from keeping dogs is likely to be challenged.

Victoria and Marcellus Weaver leave Plymouth Crown Court where they are charged with illegal dog breeding

The defendants, both from Westcountry Close, Camels Head, admitted to breeding dogs without a license between August 2019 and August 2020.

She also admitted three cases of fraud by misrepresenting ads for a phantom toy poodle, a King Charles spaniel and a Shih-Tzu in June, July and August last year.

Marcellus Weaver has denied similar allegations – and his requests have now been accepted by the council.

Ali Rafati for Victoria Weaver said she did not accept all of the agency’s allegations about false claims in the ads.

The attorney went on to say that she lied about the age of the dogs.

He added that the dog breeding charge must be accepted as it was a “liability” offense.

Mr Rafati said: “She accepts that within 12 months she has been presented with three litters that she advertised for sale, which was a violation of the requirements.”

Judith Constable, counsel for the council, said there were disagreements between prosecutors and defense that could affect the way they were convicted.

She added: “There is also the question of a prohibition order under the Animal Welfare Act, either for keeping dogs or, if I may put it colloquially, in trade.”

Marcellus Weaver at Plymouth Crown Court where he was charged with dog breeding

Marcellus Weaver at Plymouth Crown Court where he was charged with dog breeding

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Judge Peter Johnson set March 7th as a trial date, at which a judge will sit for about three days to determine and then convict the facts at issue.

This date was originally intended for a jury.

The Weavers were released on bail pending an interim hearing on October 19.

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