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Duck killer walks free from court

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 10/02/2017 Hatty Collier
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A “callous and cruel” man who killed a duck by wringing its neck after luring it over to him on the banks of the Thames has walked free from court.

Robert Muir, 49, picked up the bird for a second time and twisted its neck again before dumping its dead body in a bin in front of horrified families in Richmond.

Police were called by shocked bystanders who witnessed the man launching the random attack on the river bank at about 6pm on May 25.

CCTV footage showed Muir enticing the mallard duck with food before he grabbed it and broke its neck.

Muir, of Sandycombe Road, Richmond, was sentenced at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court to 12 weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months.

He was also ordered to carry out a 20-day rehabilitation activity requirement and to pay £300 costs and a £115 victim surcharge.

Muir was convicted at the same court on Monday, January 30 after being found guilty of one count of killing a wild mallard duck. He had denied the offence.

Detective Constable Sarah Bailey from the Met's Wildlife and Crime Unit said: "Muir lured over a female Mallard duck with food in full view of members of the public.

“Ducks in Richmond are well accustomed to human interaction. Muir has used this to cruelly entice and kill this wild duck. There was no element of sport or necessity, but it was a callous, random act of cruelty.

"I hope today's sentence serves as a reminder that wild birds are protected and animal cruelty is unacceptable and we will always pursue those who inflict harm and break clear Wildlife and Countryside legislation."

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