A Bonalbo woman is appealing her sentence which she received for animal cruelty offences.
A Bonalbo woman is appealing her sentence which she received for animal cruelty offences.

Woman who left horses to starve appeals sentence

DRESSED in riding clothes with a pink ribbon in her hair, she struck a sweet image in the courtroom.

But the sentence which Leah Angela Braid is appealing stemmed from a horrifying finding on her property last year.

The 49-year-old Bonalbo woman sat silently behind her solicitor, Philip Crick, when she appeared before Lismore District Court on Wednesday.

Braid was last year sentenced to a three month term of imprisonment for animal cruelty offences after the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals found a near-starving mare and foal on her property.

Her charges included two counts of failing to provide proper and sufficient food to an animal, failing to provide an animal with proper shelter and two counts of failing to provide vet treatment.

The RSPCA released images of the mare and filly foal which investigators found in a "severely emaciated" state on February 22 last year.

The discovery followed complaints relating to the condition of animals at the property.

Investigators found the foal was unable to stand by itself and the mare was not producing any milk.

On Wednesday, the court heard she had spent just two nights in custody before being granted bail on appeal.

Mr Crick told the court a sentencing assessment report had been ordered, and defence was awaiting one other report prior to Judge Wells' decision on the matter.

Mr Crick said they would be on track for a hearing scheduled for next Wednesday.

"We expect the matter will be ready to proceed on the 6th," he said.

The court heard a solicitor for the RSPCA would be attending next week's hearing.

After Braid's charges were laid last year, the RSPCA was granted custody of the mare and the foal was re-homed.