Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Amersham horses given reprieve

The British Horse Society has expressed its delight at the legal decision to put a stay in place until a High Court appeal is heard, which prevents the return of any of the horses rescued from Spindles Farm, Amersham.

An initial hearing took place on 4th April, when it was ruled by Deputy District Judge Sandeep Kainth at Oxford Magistrates Court that 11 donkeys and 18 Shetland ponies should be returned to Jamie Gray from whom the animals were seized in January.

While Deputy Judge Kainth did not have the power to reverse his original decision, the stay means the horses, ponies and donkeys will be able to remain in the care of the charities that rescued them until an appeal by the RSPCA against his original ruling is heard in the High Court.

BHS Welfare Senior Executive Lee Hackett said: “This is fantastic news. We are delighted that Deputy Judge Kainth has done everything in his power to ensure that the animals involved remain in the best possible hands for the foreseeable future.

“It is an enormous relief that the animals will be able to remain in the care of the numerous charities who have worked so hard to rehabilitate them until the RSPCA appeal is heard. We are fully behind the RSPCA in their appeal and offer our unconditional backing and support.”

The January rescue of more than 100 horses, ponies and donkeys from the premises of Jamie Gray was one of the largest equine welfare operations ever to have take place in the United Kingdom. It saw many different horse welfare organisations working together to seize and subsequently rehabilitate the animals involved.

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