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Animal rights activists handed jail time for roles in factory farm peaceful sit-in protest

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Non-violent, civil disobedience is not a crime. It shouldn’t be criminalized. I stand firm in the fact that no matter what legal repercussions we face, it still would pale in comparison to what those animals endured.

MICHELE BRUNORO: Two animal rights activists criminally convicted in a protest on a Fraser Valley hog farm have been sentenced to jail. Amy Soranno and Nick Schafer were sentenced Wednesday to 30 days prison and 12 months probation. They were convicted of break-and-enter and mischief after a large protest at the Excelsior Hog Farm in April 2019… “I’m not surprised. It’s kind of what we expected,” Schafer said. “I’m upset. I don’t feel justice has been served. We try hard to fight for the greater good”… Wednesday morning, dozens of animal rights protestors demonstrated outside the courthouse…

The 2019 protest was sparked by the release of a disturbing video by animal rights group PETA. The video showed dead piglets as well as the corpse of a larger pig. Some pigs in the video appeared to have growths, and one seemed to have trouble standing. PETA said the video had been provided anonymously and alleged it had been filmed at Excelsior Hog Farm. The SPCA investigated the PETA video, but did not recommend charges…

During the sentencing, the judge said breaking the law for political purposes was not acceptable and that the sentence had to send a message that would deter others… The judge called the protest a “carefully planned and orchestrated mass invasion” and that the pair “incited and encouraged many others to break the law”… Soranno and Schafer will serve their sentences on weekends, beginning later this month.

They plan to appeal the judge’s sentence, and the conviction itself. Their legal counsel will also be filing an application for bail pending appeal. “Non-violent, civil disobedience is not a crime. It shouldn’t be criminalized,” said Soranno outside court after learning she would spend time in jail. “I stand firm in the fact that no matter what legal repercussions we face, it still would pale in comparison to what those animals endured.” When asked if she would repeat her actions, she said, “I don’t regret what I did”. SOURCE…

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