Maahs Could Be Banned From Livestock For 75 Years

NEBRASKA CITY – Unadilla farmer John Maahs may be banned from keeping livestock for up to 75 years following his plea Wednesday.

The 67-year-old Maahs entered pleas to five counts of livestock cruelty on April 21, when Otoe County sheriff’s deputies found about 100 dead pigs and goats on his farm.

Maahs was previously convicted in 2009 after hundreds of pigs were found dead in large farrowing pens, but had been allowed to resume raising hogs.

District Judge Julie Smith told Maahs Wedesday that each charge carries a ban of 5 to 15 years for possession livestock and said he could be banned for 75 years.

Otoe County Attorney David Partsch also asked the court to consider $6,000 in county expenses resulting from animal rescue, disposal and clean-up.

Judge Smith asked if a psychological evaluation would be needed for the pre-sentence report, but defense attorney Tim Noerrlinger said it would not.

Partsch noted that deputies found there was food suitable for the animals on Maahs’ farm, but he did not give it to the animals.

As deputies were investigating what they called a horrific seen of  animals in different stages of decomposition, Maahs returned home with a trailer loaded with newly purchased feeder pigs.
Sentencing is scheduled on Feb. 20.

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