A mum of six who distressed several horse owners when she sold their animals without permission was given a three months suspended jail term.
Joanne Donnelly, 37, of Beckford Road, Alderton, Tewkesbury, was also banned from acquiring or looking after any horses except those she already has in her care on her land.
In an earlier hearing she had also admitted five offences of fraud and two of theft.
Judge Jamie Tabor QC was told that she may have an undiagnosed autistic-style problem and could benefit from medical investigation.
He told Donnelly: "These were silly, nasty, little offences. You must not offend again in this way or you will find yourself in very serious trouble."
He ordered her to pay costs of £150 and he made an order that she shall not 'purchase, acquire, take or look after any horses that are not presently already in her possession.' The order is for three years.
The court heard last month that her victims included Denise Scarrot who asked Donnelly to find a new home for her horse Shadow which was suffering with an ulcer and needed veterinary treatment.
"Ms Scarrot was adamant Shadow was not to be sold but given a retirement home," said prosecutor Mary Cowe at the last hearing. "But she later learned from others that the defendant had sold Shadow at auction.
"Ms Scarrot said it was very upsetting to discover this. Shadow was a horse she had bred and hand reared and he was of great sentimental value to her. The fact he had been sold at auction caused her much personal pain."
Donnelly then told her thieves had taken Shadow and was demanding money for his return.
It later transpired he had been sold at Beeston Auction in Wales. When Ms Scarrot was finally reunited with Shadow two years later his condition was much much worse.
The prosecutor had told the court that another woman Donnelly knew asked her to look after her 17 year old mare, Roxy.
"It was made clear Roxy was not to be ridden and was a 'companion horse.' The defendant agreed to take Roxy on. But less than a week later she sold the horse to a lady called Jane Dexter who runs a riding school. Donnelly told her she had ridden the horse herself and so had her daughter," said Ms Cowe.
"Ms Dexter paid £2,000 for three horses including Roxy, who she thought was worth about £500.
The prosecutor said another woman, Janice Cornbloom, agreed to let Donnelly rehome her horse Oasis in Oct 2015.
"The defendant told her she rescued horses and gave them a 'forever home.'
"But in March 2016 Ms Cornbloom discovered Oasis had been sold to a dealer. She says she was struggling to cope with that."
The prosecutor also outlined how Donnelly had bought a horse for £350 but did not pay - leaving the seller 'cheated and out of pocket.'
She also bounced three cheques she gave to suppliers of goods including hay bales and horse rugs.
At the last hearing Judge Tabor adjourned for a psychiatric nurse to assess Donnelly.
He heard from the nurse, Andy Webb, that she might benefit from referral to the Autistic Syndrome Service for assessment and follow up with help to show her how to live with her condition.
"Unfortunately there is a waiting list but we can put that in place," Mr Webb said,
Judge Tabor added it was 'frustrating' that the court could not do any more.
There were few sentencing options for the court because she has all her children to look after and cannot do unpaid work and a curfew would be 'ludicrous' in her circumstances, he said.
Article Source: Gloucester Live
Image courtesy Gloucester Live Image Archive
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