Registered VN Lindsay Newell has been found guilty of six counts of cruelty to animals at Stafford Magistrates' Court, following an investigation by the RSPCA.

The charges related to a ewe, two lambs, a Welsh pony, a goat and a pig at the Burton Wildlife and Animal Rescue Centre, a sanctuary founded in 2008 by the 27-year-old nurse in memory of her murdered grandparents.

The pig had made headlines in the Daily Mail in 2012 when Newell rescued it from a Derby council house.

Newell was given a 2-year conditional discharge, ordered to pay £2000 in costs, and disqualified from keeping sheep, equines, goats or pigs for five years.

Passing sentence, district judge David Taylor said: "These were not deliberate or intentional acts. They were a consequence of you trying to take on too many animals of a wide range."

Newell was cleared of 25 other charges of failing to feed the animals in her care properly.

RSPCA inspector Jayne Bashford who led the investigation said: "We are satisfied that the court has found the defendant guilty of six charges of unnecessary suffering. The scene the RSPCA discovered when they visited with Police, Derbyshire Trading Standards and an independent vet were quite shocking. 

"This was an extremely disturbing case where there was clear neglect and mistreatment of animals by a registered veterinary nurse.

"I am sure she set up this centre with the best intentions but things got totally out of control."

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