Animal Aid

Abusive horse trader, James Gray, loses appeal

Posted 6 May 2010

Spindles Farm owner, James Gray, has lost his appeal against convictions for neglect and cruelty under the Animal Welfare Act. His wife Julie Gray, and daughters Jodie and Cordelia, have also lost their appeals. Gray’s son, James (junior), was acquitted of two of his charges but convicted of the rest.

More than 100 horses, ponies and donkeys were removed from the farm in 2008 by the RSPCA and horse welfare charities. Inspectors arriving at the farm discovered neglected, diseased, emaciated animals living amongst the rotting corpses of other horses. Gray had reportedly paid as little as £1 for equines destined to be slaughtered and their meat sold abroad.

In June 2009, James Gray (senior) was sentenced to six months in prison, ordered to pay costs of £400,000 and banned from keeping horses, ponies and donkeys for life. Having served just four days in prison, he was released on bail after appealing his sentence.

Spindles Farm in Hythe Heath, Buckinghamshire, has been put up for sale.

Sentencing will take place on 12 May 2010.

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