A dog breeder whose fraudulent business put puppies "at risk of infection and disease" has been spared an immediate jail sentence.
Lucy Guntripp admitted selling the pets with fake documents when she appeared in court last month. The court was told this included having bogus vaccination certificates signed by her cousin Kelvin Brown.
Some of the animals sold by Guntripp, from Stramshall, were younger than eight weeks old, which is considered too young for puppies to be taken from their mother.
Now new revelations have come to light during her sentencing hearing yesterday, Monday, January 8, at North Staffordshire Justice Centre.
Magistrates were told Guntripp had personally administered imported vaccines that were illegal in the UK.
They sentenced the 21-year-old defendant to an 18-week prison sentence, suspended for a year.
She was also ordered to pay court costs, compensation and fines totalling more than £3,250.
Richard Oldroyd, defending, said: "The operation took place because of severe financial difficulties at a time when my client was having to scrape a living by running the family farm for her dad.
"He was blacklisted by the vets in Uttoxeter due to non-payment of bills.
"The vaccination she used on her animals was legal in Dublin.
"It's clear that she desperately needed the cash and that's why she sold some of the puppies before they were eight weeks old.
"There's evidence that she did have the dogs she sold microchipped and they were all well cared for."
One of the dogs sold by Guntripp, who ran the operation from her home, Trippyhill Farm, was stolen border terrier Ginny.
The bitch had been snatched from her garden in Shobnall, Burton, in January 2015.
She was subsequently sold to a buyer in Doncaster for £500 under the name "Red Caro".
Mr Oldroyd said: "My client had no idea the dog was stolen.
"She used a different name when selling the dog because no documentation had been provided when she bought it.
"She's ashamed to have been involved in the sale of a stolen dog but she bought it in good faith."
Guntripp's business saw Brown, 33, of Heathfield Road, Uttoxeter, pose as a registered vet to fraudulently sign vaccination documents.
Several of the certificates were uncovered during a raid at Trippyhill Farm in February 2016.
Animal health bosses from Staffordshire County Council also found altered tail-docking certificates.
But Mr Oldroyd argued that, contrary to the submissions of Staffordshire County Council prosecutor Lucy Daniels, the operation was "not sophisticated".
He said: "The vaccination certificates were from Dublin and weren't properly marked up with vets' stamps, which would easily give cause for suspicion.
"It would have been patently obvious to any vet who saw them.
"There's no evidence that she used the tail-docking certificates.
"Miss Guntripp is very much wiser now and has taken a step back from the farm. She's very remorseful for what she's done.
"She works extremely hard as a refrigeration unit installer around the country and comes to court today wanting to pay full compensation for the losses that have been suffered."
At her initial hearing in December, Guntripp pleaded guilty to participating in a fraudulent business between May 2015 and February 2016.
At that hearing, prosecutor Lucy Daniels said: "Lucy Guntripp made £2,950 by advertising a large number of puppies and dogs for sale between May 2015 and February 2016.
"Not only have the defendants misled the purchasers but they’ve saved money by not actually vaccinating the puppies themselves.
"This would have put the animals’ health at risk from infection and disease, as would selling the puppies at just six weeks of age."
Brown pleaded guilty to unlawfully using a practitioner’s title and three charges of making a false document.
He will be sentenced at the crown court on a date yet to be decided.