Sheffield man prosecuted over selfie with rodent stuck to plastic bottle

A man was prosecuted over a selfie with a rodent
A man was prosecuted over a selfie with a rodent
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A Sheffield man has been banned for keeping animals for a year after he posed for a selfie with a rodent he stuck to a plastic bottle.

Raeef Saeed, of Melrose Road, Burngreave, was tracked down by the RSPCA after the photograph was posted on Facebook.

The 24-year-old admitted causing unnecessary suffering to a small rodent when he appeared at Sheffield Magistrates' Court on Tuesday.

He pleaded guilty to one offence under the Animal Welfare Act of causing unnecessary suffering to a small rodent by cruelly ill-treating the animal.

RSPCA inspector Jennie Ronksley said: “We got a call from a third party who had seen the ‘selfie’ then it ended up on Facebook and the post identified Saeed.

“I attended his house and he was shown a screenshot of the photo and admitted it was him.

"He was laughing and smiling - he couldn’t understand what all the fuss was about as he said he hadn’t killed it.

“He claimed the rodent was a wild mouse he’d caught on a glue board - though vets suspect it was in fact a pet Russian dwarf hamster and co-incidentally the defendant had owned a hamster and even showed me the empty cage.

“He said he’d prised the rodent off the glue board with a spoon and washed it under a tap with water during which time it was squealing.

“Glue boards are essentially just boards or trays of plastic, wood or cardboard coated in a extremely strong, immediately holding glue. They are horribly cruel and cause enormous suffering to the animals unfortunate enough to get stuck in them. The act of removing the rodent from this would have been horrific for the tiny creature.

“If that wasn’t enough he then stuck the poor animal to the bottle to take the photo before, he said, letting it go in the house somewhere.

“We don’t know what happened to it after that, no body was recovered, but it seems impossible that things ended well.”

Saeed, who described his actions as an ‘act of stupidity’ when he appeared at court, was banned from keeping animals for 12 months and was served with a 12 month community order, which includes 80 hours of unpaid work.

He was also ordered to pay costs of £200.