Fermanagh man jailed for causing suffering to animals

A Fermanagh man has been jailed for badger baiting and associated charges which were uncovered following a PSNI swoop into horrific animal cruelty, which even his own lawyer described as “depraved”.

Jason Lee Kennedy (36) from Marble Arch Road, Enniskillen previously denied causing suffering to badgers and cats through baiting and fighting which he recorded and supplied to others, at one stage contending it was a form of vermin control.

He later changed his plea and appeared in the dock of Dungannon Crown Court for sentencing having admitted three counts of causing unnecessary suffering to animals, two involving a cat and the other a badger, as well as three counts of causing animal fights to take place.


Police at the time confirmed Kennedy was arrested in the Derrylin area of Fermanagh in March 2023 when a number of dogs were also seized as part of the investigation.

Prosecution counsel Simon Reid KC set out the shocking incidents which were captured on 12 videos while Judge Fiona Bagnall, shook her head in disgust.

Much of the details are too severe to report however in basic terms a number of cats were mauled to death after being put into pens with groups of dogs.

In another a badger was “dragged by a rope” into a pen where nine dogs set about a vicious attack. The badger is heard squealing in pain and distress “Yet no-one sought to intervene at any time.”

All animals used in baiting were either mauled to death or severely injured, and some of the dogs also had extensive wounds sustained through fighting.

Defence counsel Ciaran Roddy conceded the case of high culpability and Kennedy no longer keeps any animals, nor would he take issue with any court order banning this .

He said, “I’m not for one second trying to explain the defendant’s conduct away. It was clearly appalling. He has moved away from the offending in which he was embroiled. At the time he was marred by drug and alcohol abuse, his personal relationships had broken down as did his mental health. However he remains committed to his children.”


The defence noted the “depravity” of the offending but urged against imprisonment as Kennedy, “Does have previous issues and could rekindle his behaviour if jailed.”

Judge Bagnall remarked, “This is a disturbing case of the most cruel type. The violence was gratuitous and the animals clearly suffered prolonged agonising deaths. The outcome was pre-determined and the defendant knew exactly what would happen. These were planned gatherings. I find it impossible to understand how any human being could set up the circumstances for such cruelty on helpless animals.”

She continued: “He also videoed the gruesome incidents to show his friends which further demonstrates everything about his behaviour is repugnant. I reject his claim this behaviour was a form of vermin control as he claimed cats kill pheasants and badgers carry TB. It was instead some distorted view of a sadistic and cruel sport. I do not have to set out just how badly those poor animals suffered.”

Judge Bagnall imposed a sentence of two years and three months and banned Kennedy from owning any animal for 10 years.

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