Izzy’s owner this morning won her appeal to the High Court of Australia.
The Court found that a fair-minded observer might reasonably apprehend that the Council officer who was the moving force behind bringing the charges in the Magistrates Court against Izzy’s owner might not have brought an impartial mind to the subsequent decision by a City of Knox panel (of which she was one of three members) to destroy Izzy. The Council power is conferred by s 84P (e), Domestic Animals Act1994 (Vic)).
RSPCA SA will today renew its previous offer to the City of Knox to take Izzy for rehabilitation and to assume all liability from the time of collection.
City of Knox was ordered to pay costs by the High Court. It is estimated these will be some $400K.
The decision of the City of Knox panel was quashed by the High Court. It is now a matter for the Council whether to accept the RSPCA SA offer or for the legal process to begin afresh. Izzy inflicted a 1.5 cm cut without puncture. It is deemed a “ serious injury” under the Domestic Animals Act 1994, which is absurd. The Panel believes Councils should focus on giving a dog a second chance rather than use killing as a management tool.
The Panel extends its grateful thanks and congratulations to Panel counsel, Richard Kendall QC and Andrew Felkel.
A copy of the HCA judgment will be posted to our website page Cases of Interest page shortly.