A southern Alberta man who had more than 200 animals seized from his property will not spend any time behind bars.
Tyler Marshall made his 26th and final court appearance Friday on charges filed under the Animal Cruelty Act.
The Crown and defence came to a deal where he won’t receive a criminal conviction.
Instead, Marshall pleaded guilty to a Vulcan County bylaw where he has to pay a $10,000 fine.
The bylaw states a dog owner can’t have more than three adult canines living at a residence.
Officers seized more than 200 animals on Marshall’s rural property including more than 130 dogs in April 2017.
The SPCA said in a news release the fine is significant and sends a strong message to dog breeders about permits and following municipal regulations.
The SPCA spent more than $300,000, including vet bills and paying animal shelters, to care for the seized pets.
It also had to rent a separate space to house the more than 60 rabbits taken from the property.
Marshall has until May to pay the fine, but can apply for an extension.
If he doesn’t pay the fine, he could face several weeks in jail.
In an emailed statement issued Friday evening, Marshall’s lawyer Brendan Miller said his client “has never been cruel to animals, caused them harm or distress.”
“Mr. Marshall maintains that his rights were egregiously violated by the conduct of the Alberta Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) beginning in April of 2017.”
Marshall has also filed a civil suit against the ASPCA, Miller said.
“He looks forward to the matter proceeding so that he can show the public how humanely he treats animals, as well as expose the misconduct of the ASPCA in this case,” Miller said.