A federal magistrate on Thursday ordered animal rights groups that won a temporary ban on domestic horse slaughter to post a bond of nearly $500,000 as they continue their legal fight.
U.S. Magistrate Robert Scott settled on the amount after hearing from attorneys who represent two companies that had planned to begin operations this week at slaughterhouses in New Mexico and Iowa.
"The bond requires the plaintiffs to put their money where their mouth is. There are real-life consequences to these actions and we're appreciative of the judge recognizing that," said lawyer Pat Rogers, who represents Responsible Transportation, a company formed by three young men who have collected nearly $3 million from family, friends and other investors to open a plant in Sigourney, Iowa.
The case has sparked an emotional debate about how best to deal with the tens of thousands of wild, unwanted and abandoned horses across the country as drought conditions and the lack of feed in many states continue to exacerbate the problem.
The bond covers the companies' costs and lost profits for the next 30 days should the animal rights groups lose the case. Within that time, another hearing is planned in federal court to determine the fate of the temporary ban.
The full story is available at www.seattlepi.com/news/us/article/Judge-orders-bond-posted-in-horse-slaughter-case-4717919.php.
Reprinted in part from Seattle Post Intelligencer