Penderlea horses conviction still in court as animals await rescue

A photo taken earlier this year shows the poor condition of one of the horses at Candelo.

A photo taken earlier this year shows the poor condition of one of the horses at Candelo.

CONCERN over the welfare of close to 160 horses near Candelo continues as the owner of Penderlea Horses appeals her conviction over animal cruelty.

In late April, Janice Northey was convicted on 54 counts of animal cruelty, ordered to pay almost $60,000 in fines, vet bills and court costs, and banned from owning horses for 10 years (click here for the story)

As part of the verdict she was also ordered to immediately surrender all the horses in her care, but now, almost four months later, that has yet to occur.

Ms Northey wasn't in Bega Local Court for the April conviction and subsequently applied for an annulment, which the magistrate rejected.

She has now appealed to the District Court to overturn that annulment rejection - the hearing for which is scheduled for late October.

The Facebook page that has followed the plight of the horses is continuing its exposure of the animals’ condition and court proceedings – and spokeswoman Lara Fanning was on Friday featured in metropolitan media.

Ms Fanning told media at least one horse had died since Ms Northey’s conviction, its carcass left to rot where it fell.

In addition, many of the horses had been placed either on Crown land or on private property without the land owners’ consent, she said.

Another supporter of the Save the Penderlea Horses campaign who wished to remain anonymous visited the BDN offices recently to highlight similar concerns.

“She was given 28 days to surrender the horses, but still nothing’s happened,” she said.

“More horses have even been moved to the [Candelo] Commons since the case was heard!

“Through winter particularly some of these horses are in delicate condition and we want to know if and when the RSPCA is taking custody of them.

“Our only aim is that these animals get proper care,” she said.

RSPCA NSW chief inspector David O’Shannessy confirmed the court decision is currently under appeal, but said an additional complaint about the horses’ condition had been added to its database.

“The RSPCA has commenced a prosecution in relation to the welfare and care of the Penderlea Horses, the prosecution is currently under appeal in the District Court of New South Wales and we are hopeful that at the conclusion of those proceedings that the orders of the local court will be confirmed,” he said.

“With respect to the ongoing concerns for the welfare of these horses, the RSPCA has added a fresh complaint with respect to the current condition of these horses to its cruelty complaint database.

“This matter is currently under investigation.”

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