- Associated Press - Friday, March 18, 2016

WARSAW, Poland (AP) - Polish agriculture authorities and prosecutors are investigating the sudden death of a mare that was on lease from a stud in Britain that is owned by Shirley Watts, the wife of Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts.

The Arabian mare Preria was put down Thursday at a Warsaw clinic after developing intestinal problems at the Janow Podlaski stud, in eastern Poland, the second such case since October. The state-owned farm in Janow Podlaski is reputed for its breed of Arabian horses. Preria originally came from Janow Podlaski.

“We are trying to determine the factors that played a role in the case and we would like to make sure that everything was done with proper care,” the head of a state farming agency, Waldemar Humiecki, told a news conference.

He would not say what financial or other consequences the death of the horse will have for the farm.

The farm has been in the spotlight lately. Last month, its long-time manager, Marek Trela was fired by the country’s new agriculture authorities over allegations of mismanagement and over the sudden death in October of the stud’s most precious mare Pianissima, due to bowel obstruction. That death is also under investigation.

The unexpected dismissal of Trela and of the head of another stud has drawn strong criticism from horse breeders in Poland and abroad. It came under a new government that is making sweeping changes to the management of state-owned companies.

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