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A horse was detained by police in South Africa over the theft of a vehicle.

The horse in the Soweto township had been pulling a cart whose load happened to be the stripped body of a brand new car.

Police spokeswoman Captain Lindiwe Mbatha said: “Cops patrolling the township pulled over the cart carrying the Corolla Conquest, suspected to have been stolen.”

The horse and the two suspects driving the cart “were locked [up] for being in possession of a suspected stolen vehicle,” said Capt Mbatha.

Owing to his ‘hot’ load, legislation prevented police from leaving the horse outside the holding cells, so he was hauled in with the humans. He was later released into the care of an animal rights association in Johannesburg, a privilege denied his two accomplices.

It is thought the animal won’t be testifying in court when his handlers are tried within the next 48hr.