The RSPCA is working with the Gardia Civil in Spain to try to resolve an alleged welfare problem on a farm in Andalusia.
Suzanne Jenkins, 33, formerly of Kilcot, Gloucestershire, runs a farm in Medina Sidona where it is alleged that 16 horses have died and another 36 are starving (news, 21 August).
Mrs Jenkins was banned from keeping horses for two years at Coleford Magistrates Court on Thursday (23 October) in a separate case brought by the RSPCA.
She was also fined £600 with £400 costs and deprived of five Trakehner horses.
The animal nutritionist, who had kept 49 horses at her stud farm in Gloucestershire, was found guilty of three charges of causing unnecessary suffering and four of poor husbandry under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. She was cleared of a fifth husbandry charge.
RSPCA Inspector Debbie Large said the RSPCA was concerned the five horses horses seized during the Gloucestershire investigation would have ended up in Spain.
She added: “She is currently facing investigation from the Spanish authorities and we have sent a senior officer out to Spain to liaise with the Gardia Civil and the local welfare organisations involved.
“She had stated in court that her business was going very well in Spain, but the conditions there make this case pale into insignificance.”
Jenkins’ ban on owning horses is not effective in Spain.
When RSPCA officers visited Jenkin’s Gloucestershire property in June this year they found a Trakehner mare, Polar Princess —worth £20,000, “severely underweight” the court heard.
Three colts were in a poor condition. Grand Dezzo was “abnormally weak and thin” and suffering skin lesions, Impressario was also thin, with a poor coat and Ullando was emaciated and had dental problems.
Three-year-old mare Evie had very poor body condition and a five-year-old gelding, Lugiani, was being kept in a stable that had not been cleaned for two to three days.
Other horses were being kept on meagre grass in a field with dangerous fencing.
The five Trakehner horses seized from Mrs Jenkins have been cared for at the Bransby Home of Rest for Horses in Leominster, Herefordshire since June.
Philip York general manager of the charity said: “In a very short period of time the horses regained their health simply because they were fed a correct diet.”
He said Bransby has spent around £15,000 nursing the horses back to health and they will go out on loan to suitable homes when they are fully recovered.
The RSPCA has thanked Bransby for their help in the case.