THE owner of a rescue centre raided by police and the RSPCA says her life would not be worth living if she was stripped of her right to keep animals.
Lindsay Newell spoke 24 hours after an array of animals were seized from Burton Wildlife and Animal Rescue Centre, a charity she founded in memory of her murdered grandparents.
RSPCA inspectors seized horses, piglets, a turkey and wildlife, as well as a disabled buzzard from the centre in Etwall.
A Canada goose was seized from Miss Newell’s home in Lincoln Road, Stapenhill, where police also confiscated a range of medication.
A dead sheep and a pigeon were also discovered at the sites during the raid.
Miss Newell said she was ‘devastated’ by what had happened and because some of her animals had been taken away.
She told the Mail: “I am so upset about it all that I have hardly eaten anything since it happened.
“I believe the raid happened because of malicious rumours and reports and I am sick of it.
“I just don’t know what to do any more — it feels like I can’t cope. I felt like dying when it was all going on. I can’t take much more stress.
“When is this going to end? I have tried my very best to care for sick wildlife and animals and I keep getting it thrown back in my face.”
Dozens of police officers, RSPCA inspectors and trading standards officials were at both sites all day on Thursday to investigate the living conditions of the animals, how they were being treated and the state the creatures were in.
A spokesman for the RSPCA said: “The RSPCA accompanied Staffordshire Police to execute a warrant following concerns for the welfare of animals at the venue.
“A number of animals, including farm animals and wildlife, were taken into care by the RSPCA on the advice of veterinary experts.
“As this is an active investigation the RSPCA is limited as to what information we are able to release at this stage.
“Sadly, officers attending the incident did find dead and sick animals at the location and the circumstances around these animals will form part of the investigation.
“Please note at this stage no further information is being made available as the RSPCA investigation is now active.”
A police spokesman said the investigation was ongoing regarding matters under the Animal Welfare Act.