BRANTFORD, Ont. ─ The people charged after 40 ball pythons were found in a Brantford, Ont., motel room in August have been fined and banned from owning any animals for 10 years.
Guy Boissonneault and Cinthia Csomos were found guilty on Wednesday of three charges each, including causing distress to an animal, failing to provide for the general welfare of an animal and failing to provide an established level of care ─ an appropriate amount of water ─ to an animal.
They were fined $1,000 each and ordered to pay restitution of more than $600 to the Brant SPCA to cover the cost of caring for the snakes.
The snakes, which ranged in size from about one foot to 4 1/2 feet were found in masses in four plastic containers on Aug. 15.
Court heard that it was a very hot day and when the snakes were found, they were dehydrated and in distress.
When the lids of the plastic containers were lifted, hot, moist air emanated from the container and the snakes popped up their heads to get fresh air. When the snakes were picked up they went limp like cooked spaghetti noodles, a sign of ill-health.
They were also under distress because of overcrowding and court heard the smaller snakes were likely fearful of being eaten by the larger ones.
Ball pythons are the smallest of the African pythons and are popular in the pet trade, but it’s against Brantford’s animal control bylaws to own one.
Boissonneault and Csomos were tried, convicted and fined in absentia because they did not attend the court proceedings.