Judge scales back penalty for illegal sale of goldfish
Published 30/04/2010 | 05:00
A judge yesterday ordered the removal of an electronic tag placed on a 66-year-old great-grandmother after a goldfish was sold unlawfully to a teenager at her pet shop.
Judge Adrian Smith said the 10-week 6pm-to-6am curfew imposed against Joan Higgins (pictured) was "inappropriate" for a "respectable lady" with no previous convictions as he ruled the correct sentence was a conditional discharge.
Mrs Higgins, licence holder at Major Pets in Sale, Greater Manchester, was prosecuted by Trafford Council after it sent in a 15-year-old boy to make a test purchase of a goldfish.
The animal was sold by her son, Mark (44), who did not question the child's age or provide any information about the care of the fish.
Mr Higgins admitted selling the goldfish to a minor and Mrs Higgins - who has run the shop for 28 years - also pleaded guilty to six contraventions of her pet shop licence.