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Fugitive horse trader in custody

May 27, 2010

by Laurie Dixon

Fugitive British horse trader James Gray has been arrested at a police checkpoint.

Blakey, pictured above after being rescued from Spindles Farm. Blakey was rehabilitated by World Horse Welfare - his "after" shot is below.

View the World Horse Welfare video of the case.

Gray, who fled from court just before he was due to be sentenced on horse neglect charges on May 12, has been on the run for two weeks.

Gray, 46, was stopped by police at a routine checkpoint in Kidderminster, Worcestershire, early today (NZ time).

He will appear in Aylesbury Crown Court, in Buckinghamshire, tomorrow.

Gray and other members of his family have been convicted over the ill-treatment of horses at Spindles Farm, in Amersham, Buckinghamshire, in January 2008.

It became the biggest equine rescue operation in British history, as authorities removed more than 114 horses from the property, three of whom had to be euthanized.

The bodies of 32 horses were found on the property.

The Grays challenged their convictions and sentences, but all were upheld barring two charges.

Gray, who was originally sentenced to 24 weeks in jail for the offending, was sentenced to 26 weeks in his absence, after he fled the court complex during a lunch break.

Gray has served only four days of his sentence, as he was released pending the outcome of his appeal.

Gray has been ordered to pay the SPCA £400,000.



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