Woman who put horses at risk hit with costs bill

Thursday 19th May 2022 4:00 pm
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Cheltenham Magistrates Court
(Gloucestershire News Service )

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A CINDERFORD woman who endangered the health of nine horses by failing to unwrap their hay bales properly, putting them at risk of swallowing plastic, has been ordered to pay almost £4,000 in court costs.

Tina Hodge, 54, of Cullimore View, Cinderford, pleaded guilty at Cheltenham Magistrates’ Court on May 11 to failing to take steps to ensure that the needs of the horses on land opposite Court Farm, Coleford rd, Bream, were met on 5th March 2021

As well as being ordered to pay prosecution costs of £3,900 and a victim services surcharge of £22, Hodge was also given a three-year conditional discharge.

The charge which she admitted was brought under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and stated that she “did fail properly to remove all plastic wrapping and netting from the hay bales deposited as food requiring the horses to rip the plastic wrapping netting in order to eat, causing a health risk to the horses by ingesting small amounts of plastic.”

Hodge denied two further similar animal welfare charges which were dismissed after the prosecution offered no evidence

One of those charges was that she failed to muck out the stables “causing four horses to stand in excessive faecal waste of approximately two feet in height and failed to provide the horses with access to fresh water.”

The other alleged that the needs of three horses were not met “in that the horses were standing in an excessive amount of faeces and wet straw that had not been mucked out for some time, with wet bedding due to large holes in the roof and no visible access to drinking water.”

Hodge had denied all three charges against her but admitted one of them on the scheduled day of trial and the others were then not proceeded with.

The magistrates said her credit for pleading guilty was reduced because of the lateness of plea.

She was given until June 11 to pay the total amount due of £3,922.

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