A "psychopathic" teenager who stole and mutilated cats before setting his dogs on them has been jailed. Frank Lyn Lewis, 18, committed the atrocity shortly after a youth court sentenced him for stealing a sheep and beheading it.

Unemployed Lewis stole a cage containing 10 cats from the Y Nant Cat Sanctuary in Port Talbot, Wales, in July 2016. He then slit the cats' legs in order to slow them down before releasing them near the sanctuary with his hunting dogs in hot pursuit.

Three of the cats were found mauled to death, four of them were found safe and returned to the animal home and a further three are still missing presumed dead.

Prosecutor Georgina Buckley told Swansea Crown Court: "Lewis essentially used the cats for sport. He used his dogs to hunt down and kill them. He caused lacerations to the cats himself to try and hinder their escape.

"Post-mortem gave the cause of death as the result of an attack and having been shaken viciously by an animal, like a dog," the Metro reported

Sanctuary owner Theresa Ahmed injured her back while looking for the stolen cats and has subsequently undergone an MRI scan. She said: "The sickening realisation that cats were missing and what had happened to them will remain with me for the rest of my life."

Just two weeks before the cat attack Lewis was given a referral order by Swansea Youth Court for stealing a sheep before hanging it upside down on a tree and chopping its head off with a machete. A photo of Lewis posing with the sheep has been circulated online.

Child psychologists monitoring Lewis in the aftermath of the sheep attack described him as exhibiting "psychopathic traits" but he was left free to commit a second act of profound animal cruelty. His mother committed suicide five years ago.

Lewis pleaded guilty to burglary and criminal damage and was yesterday (23 January) sentenced to 30 months in a young offender institute.

Counsel for the defence, Mr Herd said: "Lewis concedes his dogs were trained to hunt and he knew full well about what the outcome would be."