Marineland Facing More Animal Cruelty Charges

CBJ — Ontario’s animal welfare agency has laid six new animal cruelty charges against Marineland.

The Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA) says the charges relate to elk, red deer and fallow deer kept at the tourist attraction in Niagara Falls, Ont.

Deputy chief Jennifer Bluhm says they have laid one count each of permitting elk, red deer and fallow deer to be in distress. The OSPCA has also laid one count each of failing to provide the standards of care for elk, red deer and fallow deer.

Marineland was charged with five counts of animal cruelty in late November that related to the treatment of peacocks, guinea hens and black bears.

As of this posting, the company had not commented on the latest charges but has previously said it intends to defend itself in court.

The OSPCA has said the previous charges stemmed from a complaint of alleged animal cruelty. Marineland has denied the previous allegations and said they came from an employee who was fired for poor performance and inappropriate behaviour.

Marineland is expected to appear in court on Jan. 26 to face 11 counts of animal cruelty charges.

A conviction on all counts could result in a fine up to $60,000, a lifetime ban on owning animals and up to two years in jail, according to the OSPCA.