Cotswold woman banned from keeping horses for life after two foals in her care came close to death

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Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard: Photograph of the Author by , Chief reporter

A Cotswold woman banned from keeping horses has been jailed after RSPCA officers found two young horses in her care close to death.

Lisa Fletcher, 47, of Barn Meadow Road,Winchcombe admitted two counts of causing suffering to two horses and one count of breaching a disqualification order banning her from keeping horses when she appeared in court last month.

One of the foals has since been rehomed by Olympic dressage star Charlotte Dujardin.

Fletcher, who was previously banned from keeping horses for five years, was given a 16-week custodial sentence, ordered to pay £2,000 costs and disqualified from keeping horses for life when she appeared for sentencing at Cheltenham Magistrates Court on Monday, June 9.

RSPCA inspector Suzi Smith said she was pleased that the sentence reflected the seriousness of the offences.

"Without veterinary treatment the outcome for these two horses could have been very tragic," she said.

Inspector Smith was called to a DIY livery yard in December 2013 where she found two young horses.

"The foal was very, very thin," she said. "The vet discovered he had a severe lung infection and was riddled with worms. I don't think he would have survived the week if we hadn't got the veterinary care he needed.

"It was touch and go. He needed antibiotic injections twice a day and a great deal of TLC," Inspector Smith continued. "Luckily he pulled through and has gone from rags to riches as he's been adopted by Olympic gold medallist Charlotte Dujardin who has named him Santa."

The other horse, called Frank, was found to be also very thin but recovered well. The RSPCA hope to find him a home in the future too.

In October 2013 magistrates banned Lisa Fletcher from keeping horses for five years after she pleaded guilty to three offences of neglecting a grey Arab stallion called Raji by failing to explore the cause of his weight loss, breathing difficulties and overgrown hooves.

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