A warrant has been issued for the arrest of a woman who has a history of horse cruelty.

The 36-year-old woman from Surrey failed to show at Guildford Magistrates Court on Monday, where she was due to be sentenced for causing unnecessary suffering to three ponies.

Bobby, a dun gelding, Milo a bay gelding (pictured) and an aged mare called Cally were found in March by a field office for the International League for the Protection of Horses (ILPH) underweight and suffering from severe louse infections.

Mrs Michele Alcroft of 37 Hamesmoor Road, Mytchett, Camberley, Surrey had pleaded guilty on 5 November to five charges of causing unnecessary suffering to Bobby, Milo and Cally. She was due to attend Guildford Magistrates Court on 26 November to be sentenced but failed to show up.

In her absence Alcroft was banned from keeping equines for 10 years and the ILPH was awarded custody of Bobby, Milo and Cally.

She had received an adult caution last year for neglecting two ponies so badly they had to be put down.

ILPH field officer Ted Barnes found the three among a number of other ponies living in unsuitable conditions on a rented premises at Strawberry Farm in Guildford following a tip off from a member of the public.

Mr Barnes said: “All three ponies were underweight and suffering from severe louse infections. When I removed the two rugs that Mrs Alcroft had fitted to Milo, he immediately swung round and tried to bite his back and sides.

“His body was covered in large areas of hair loss and raw skin as a result of self mutilation. He was obviously in a great deal of discomfort.”