Thomas Hope Price, son of notorious gypsy cob breeder Thomas Tony Price, has been handed an eight-week jail sentence after he was caught stealing back horses that had been seized for fly-grazing.
Newport Crown Court heard last week (15 December) how Cardiff Council had taken nine horses from a playing field in Ely in March 2013. But the same day that the horses were removed to a secure location three men and a woman were reportedly seen loading them into a bright yellow lorry.
The lorry was stopped in the area of Treforest half an hour later.
Prosecutor Nick Gedge said: “Police stopped the lorry and a male got out of the passenger side and started walking away.
“He told an officer: ‘I know nothing about it, I am out for a walk —where the hell am I?’
“That was Thomas Hope Price.”
Price was arrested and later pleaded guilty to the theft of nine horses.
Twenty-nine-year-old Price is already serving a 12-month prison sentence for the non-payment of £43,000 of court costs from a previous trial.
Judge David Wynn Morgan sentenced him to a further eight weeks in prison and ordered him to pay an £80 victim surcharge.
It has been reported that his father was also arrested for the theft but that he could not be prosecuted because of “identification issues”.
World Horse Welfare’s Roly Owers described the situation as a “ludicrous merry-go-round” and another example of “callous disregard for equine welfare”.
“Thankfully the judge saw through his denial of responsibility: one of the oldest fly-grazing tricks in the book, along with the stealing back of lawfully seized horses,” Mr Owers added. “His actions are an affront to all responsible horse owners who rightly play by the rules.”