Police find 30 dogs, stun gun and drugs during raid at suspected puppy farm

Police found 30 dogs during an investigation into suspected illegal puppy farming.

Drugs and a stun gun were also recovered as officers stormed properties as part of the probe.

Three people were arrested after three properties in Kent were raided on Wednesday.

Officers found ten puppies without a mum in Yalding and they were checked by a vet.

The RSPCA inspected a further 20 dogs with a scanner at the property to see if any had been reported missing.

Investigators say they will be looking at any "possible offences" involving the 30 dogs.

Documents and phones relating to puppy sales were also seized during the raid.

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A stun gun and a stash of amphetamine were uncovered in Hadlow, Kent and two people were arrested.

A third person was also arrested on suspicion of assaulting a police officer.

Police had been investigating reports of illegal puppy farming and the sale of dogs in Kent and other counties, which are often advertised online.

The probe, involving Kent Police, the RSPCA and local authorities, is also linked to possible thefts of adult dogs.

Investigators say the illegal trade can lead to families ending up with puppies who are “seriously ill”.

It comes after last year's coronavirus lockdown sent puppy prices surging as adults decided to get a dog while spending more time at home.

Inspector Lizzie Jones, of the Tonbridge and Malling community safety unit, said: "We are aware of concerns around the illegal trade of puppies in west Kent who are often offered for sale on websites.

"Those who do trade illegally sometimes sell puppies before they reach the required minimum age of eight weeks, without the necessary vaccinations and with fraudulent paperwork.

"Sadly, this can result in families receiving new pets who are sometimes seriously ill."

Anthony Garnett, Tonbridge and Malling Council’s licensing chief, said: "This joint operation was prompted following a number of reports from the public and several months of intelligence gathering by our team.

"The unlicensed breeding and sale of dogs is a major concern as it runs the risk of animals being poorly cared for and buyers suffering the heartbreak of losing a pet, often incurring thousands of pounds of veterinary bills in the process.”

Amy Wilson, 33, of Hadlow, was charged with possessing amphetamine and a weapon for the discharge of an electrical incapacitation device.

She was bailed to appear at Sevenoaks Magistrates' Court on February 8.

Mia Shipwash, 36, of Hadlow, was charged with assaulting a constable in the execution of their duty and a public order offence.

She was bailed to attend Maidstone Magistrates' Court on February 19.

A 26-year-old man was released without charge.

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