ACNC takes action on charity linked to controversial animal farm
Monday, 19th August 2019 at 5:24 pm
An organisation linked to a rescue farm that was raided for alleged animal cruelty has been stripped of its charitable status, the charities watchdog has revealed.
The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission confirmed last Friday that The Trustee for Storybook Angels for Disabled Animals has had its charity registration revoked.
The organisation was founded by Lisa-Jayne Cameron, whose Storybook Farm Animal Garden Rescue was raided by the RSPCA in March.
The RSPCA executed a search warrant on the property after receiving a number of concerns and seized 37 animals.
“All of the dogs were living in faeces and urine. Disabled animals were lying, unable to move normally, living in filth and squalor, some even without water or bedding,” the RSPCA said in a statement.
“The smell was unbearable. The suffering of the animals was palpable. The entire scene was heartbreaking.”
‼️WARNING: VIDEO CONTAINS GRAPHIC IMAGES‼️RSPCA Queensland has released vision from its raid on Storybook Farm Animal Garden Rescue on Wednesday afternoon, during which 37 animals were seized. They're now seeking information from members of the public who may have surrendered their animals to Storybook Farm or recognise any of the animals seized.
Posted by ABC Brisbane on Wednesday, 20 March 2019
Pro Bono News attempted to contact Storybook Angels but the number listed for the charity has been disconnected.
Storybook Angels was one of five organisations recently stripped of their charity status following separate investigations by the ACNC.
The other four organisations are Kaizen Synergy College, White Coats Charity Incorporated, Australian Community and Health Foundation, and Beyond Community and Health Foundation.
ACNC commissioner Dr Gary Johns said the decision to revoke charity status was reserved for the most serious cases of misconduct or mismanagement.
“Following investigations into these charities, we had no alternative but to revoke the registration of these charities with the ACNC,” Johns said.
“Without charity status, these organisations will lose their eligibility for Commonwealth charity tax concessions.”
Because of secrecy provisions in the ACNC Act, the commission cannot disclose the nature of its investigations.
But Australian Securities and Investments Commission records show that Beyond Community and Health Foundation moved to voluntarily deregister itself in September 2016.
Kaizen Synergy College also moved to deregister itself in July this year.
Pro Bono News has approached the four organisations for comment.
This announcement follows a recent warning from the ACNC that more than 2,000 Australian charities were at risk of losing their charity status for failing their annual reporting requirements.