Daughter who took on dead mum's XL Bully now has criminal record for missing exemption deadline

Generic image of an XL Bully dog
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A 22-year-old XL Bully owner now has a criminal record after she missed the exemption deadline by a matter of days. Briony Allen became the owner of the "good natured" dog when her sick mother died towards the end of last year - and also became responsible for her younger siblings and the family home.

By law, all XL Bullies were required to be registered by Wednesday, January 31, this year. However on Sunday, February 4, Allen called Leicestershire Police for advice on getting an exemption certificate for Pippa, who her mother had owned since she was a puppy.

She was told the deadline had now passed and on February 22, officers went to her home and seized the dog. Prosecutor Ryan Houghton told Leicester Magistrates' Court on May 29: "The law is very clear - at this point the ownership of an XL Bully dog is an offence unless you have an exemption certificate."

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LeicestershireLive reports that Mr Houghton continued: "I don't think it's possible for anyone not to know after all the publicity. That's offset in this case by the fact the defendant was making efforts to get her dog registered."

The prosecutor told the court a specialist police officer had described Pippa as unable to follow commands but being "good natured" and not aggressive. He asked magistrates to make a Contingent Destruction Order, which would mean Allen could have the dog back as long as certain requirements were met, including neutering and obtaining an exemption certificate.

Ziyad Lunat, representing Allen, of Woodgate, Leicester, said: "Her mum passed away and the dog, the house and her younger siblings all became her responsibility. She was previously the carer for her mum and has now taken over the care of her siblings. Miss Allen had worked in the care sector before and planned to in the future. She will now have a criminal conviction against her name, which will make that difficult."

Allen was given a six-month conditional discharge and must pay a £26 victim surcharge. Magistrates made the Contingent Destruction Order, so Allen could get Pippa back once an exemption certificate was secured. Susan Halcroft, the chair of the bench, told Allen: "We sympathise with you. You have had a difficult time - you lost your mum and it's taken a lot of courage from you to bring up your siblings. When somebody dies it's difficult with the paperwork to change things over. That's how it works and unfortunately you've been caught up with that."