Suspended sentence for woman who flushed monkey down toilet and offered it cocaine

Suspended sentence for woman who flushed monkey down toilet and offered it cocaine

A WOMAN has received a suspended jail sentence after she offered her pet monkey cocaine and flushed the animal down the toilet.

Vicki Holland, 38, of Wordsworth Road, Newport, Wales, has also been banned from keeping animals for life after pleading guilty to three Animal Welfare Act offences.

The monkey, a common marmoset named Milly, has since been cared for at a rescue centre, however experts say she "will never fully recover".


The monkey's suffering came to light after Gwent Police discovered videos of Holland’s cruel acts on her phone.

Police executed a search warrant at Holland's property, however she claimed she had sold the marmoset a week earlier.

The monkey was subsequently found at another address and signed into the care of the RSPCA.

Holland pleaded guilty on November 18 before being sentenced at Newport Magistrates' Court on December 10.

Speaking after sentencing, RSPCA inspector and exotics officer Sophie Daniels condemned the animal's "shocking mistreatment".


"I was immediately and gravely concerned about the welfare of this marmoset when I saw these disturbing videos," she said.

"Videos from the defendant's phone showed Holland offering the marmoset cocaine, while another showed the clearly terrified marmoset down a toilet bowl.

"Holland was shouting, swearing, laughing and at one point in the clip, the toilet is flushed, showing the petrified animal struggling to cling onto the side of the bowl."

The RSPCA transferred Milly to Monkey World in Dorset — the renowned ape rescue centre founded in 1987 by the late Irish-American zookeeper Jim Cronin.

She has been cared for at the facility by specialist primate experts since January 2020.

Worst abuse in 30 years

Despite growing to trust staff and settle in to her new surroundings with the aid of another rescued marmoset named Moon, the facility's director said Milly will be traumatised for life.

"Milly's case was tragic and heartbreaking," said Dr Alison Cronin, Jim's wife, who was asked to provide witness testimony for the court case against Holland.

"She spent her life living in fear and was subjected to abuse and cruelty that is the worst that I have seen in more than 30 years of rescuing primates.

"Milly will never fully recover from her abuse and will be psychologically damaged for the rest of her life but the key to saving Milly was companionship of her own kind.

"With Moon at her side, she has been able to relax and enjoy her life, finally."

Holland, whose 12-week jail term was suspended for 12 months, must also pay £420 in costs and a £128 victim surcharge.