Alpaca Worth £30k Living On 'Death Row' Could Be Euthanised After Court Refuses Appeal
An alpaca called Geronimo who has been living on 'death row' could soon be put down after an appeal was refused.
Geronimo, who is worth a reported £30,000 ($40k), tested positive for bovine tuberculosis (bTB) back in 2017 and her owner, Helen Macdonald, has been in the midst of an ongoing court battle ever since.
Plans to euthanise Geronimo were put on hold to give Helen time to launch her appeal in challenging the Court of Appeal.
In a statement, Helen wrote: "It is with extreme disappointment that we must report that, on 13 November 2019, the Court of Appeal refused our application for permission to appeal the High Court's Order dated 9 July 2019. This means that the Court of Appeal has refused to even hear Geronimo's case.
"As such, the Secretary of State's decision to slaughter Geronimo stands and we have no further right to appeal the decision in an English court, although we are considering an appeal to the European Court of Human Rights."
She continued: "Needless to say, we find both decisions utterly confounding. According to the reasoning of the Court of Appeal, the Minister was 'reasonably entitled' to conclude that it was unnecessary for further tests to be carried out on Geronimo because to permit this in circumstances where an animal had already tested positive twice for bovine tuberculosis (bTB) would 'lead to dispute in numerous cases and would unnecessarily disrupt and undermine the testing regime'.
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"In our view, this reasoning fails to take proper account of the interests of owners who (as in this case) have raised very legitimate doubts about the accuracy of the testing regime itself.
"Furthermore, the reasoning does not properly address the lack of a viable explanation by the Secretary of State as to when and where Geronimo is supposed to have contracted bTB, nor the fact that Geronimo (and the 5 alpacas with whom he is held in isolation) continue to exhibit absolutely no clinical signs of a bTB infection."
Helen, a veterinary nurse, now has until 13 May 2020 to make the application to the European Court of Human Rights in a last ditch attempt to save her alpaca.
According to Bristol Live, six-year-old Geronimo is said to be worth £30,000 and was brought to the UK from New Zealand in August 2017.
Helen has always said that the test results were incorrect - a belief that has been backed by the British Alpaca Society.
Featured Image Credit: Facebook/Geronimo