A fireman is demanding EUR 20,000 compensation from a budgie breeder he claims sold him infected birds that nearly killed him.
Plaintiff Walter Reintges, 60, had reportedly bought 14 of the birds from a 44-year-old unnamed breeder, before watching them die of a toxic bug that gave him pneumonia.
Reintges’s lawyers say he was so ill, he ended up in a coma in intensive care.
He was diagnosed as suffering from inflamed lungs, kidney failure and septic shock and as he battled the disease, several of his toes had to be amputated.
His wife explained how she was told he was not expected to survive.
Medics diagnosed that he had been infected with Psittacosis, a disease that affects members of the parrot family.
But the case hit a dramatic hitch at the first hearing when defence attorneys said the man would not be able to attend court because he had been imprisoned for child abuse.
Reintges – from Mechernich, North Rhine Westphalia, Germany – is demanding EUR 20,000 (GBP 17,500) compensation as well as the purchase price of the 14 birds of EUR 2,700 (GBP 2,360).
The child abuser rejects the claim, saying that the budgies were healthy when they were sold.
Details of what the child abuse involved for which he was given a several-year jail term were not revealed in court.
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