‘Devastated’ by horse loan cheat

Lisa Iveson
Lisa Iveson

A COUPLE from Pocklington have said they were left “devastated” by a conwoman’s lies over the horse they loved.

Tom Ivison, 26, decided to buy his wife Lisa a horse as a wedding gift from Deborah Cooper in June 2010.

However, they later found out that the piebald cob mare Saksa, which they paid £1,400 for, did not belong to Cooper.

On the day the couple were due to attend a friend’s marriage, they were told by police that they would have to give Saska up.

Mrs Ivison said: “I was devastated. It was my first ever horse. She was just perfect. I still miss her.”

Robert Stevenson, prosecuting, told York Crown Court the Ivisons, of Canal Lane, were not the only people cheated by Cooper.

She had conned owner Anne Harrison into lending her for six months, but when Mrs Harrison tried to collect the horse at the end of the loan she and Cooper had disappeared and she never received a penny.

PC Sarah Ward tracked Saska down after finding pictures of the mare on Facebook, and the conwoman was jailed last Tuesday, 20 March, for 12 months.

Mrs Ivison was in regular contact with Cooper during the nine months she looked after the horse.

She said: “We became quite friendly. We were always in touch. She was asking how Saska was and came over for cups of tea. It wasn’t like she sold me a horse and that was it.

“It was only when the horse was taken away that I stopped hearing from her.

Cooper, 43, of Chapel Garth, Broomfleet, near Brough, pleaded guilty to theft and fraud.

Mrs Ivison said: “We want to try to raise awareness from this about being careful who people buy horses from and who people loan horses to.”