Wednesday, July 18, 2007

7th Circuit Court Gives Cavel Injunction

Cavel International has been closed since district Court Judge Kapala ruled that Illinois could enforce its new law banning horse slaughter in June 2007. However, in a surprise action today by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, the plant was given yet another injunction allowing the plant to reopen and continue the slaughter of horses for human consumption. The decision states “In light of the irreparable harm that will come to the plaintiffs if the motion is not granted, and a degree of novelty raised by the appeal, the motion is GRANTED”.

The members and staff of the AHDF are disappointed in this decision. “The novelty is that the Court of Appeals would ignore the will of the people,” says Shelley Sawhook, president of the American Horse Defense Fund. “The plant has been given a number of injunctions and opportunities to allow them to plead their case. They will be opening once again tomorrow under 2 separate injunction,” says Sawhook “While the appeal was not unexpected, the awarding of the injunction was very unexpected”.

Cavel International slaughters horses for human consumption overseas. The Illinois state legislature passed a law banning the slaughter of horses for human consumption in May of 2007, but the plant appealed the law as being unconstitutional. Federal law prohibits the use of taxpayer dollars from being used to inspect the meat and Cavel would be operating under the injunction issued to force the federal government to pay for the inspections, not the fee-for-service plan the USDA implemented after the federal ban on funding was passed.

“Issues like these show why it is important for federal legislation to ban the slaughter of horses for human consumption is so very important,” says Sawhook. However, the bills to protect horses from slaughter are stalled in the Senate (S 311) and House (HR 503). Last session HR 503 passed the House by an overwhelming majority, but went unheard in the Senate because of blocks by a few Senators. This session the same Senators have again, let it be known that they do not wish the bill to get floor time and even though it passed through committee it has not been scheduled for a vote. “It is time that our government not have legislation held up because one or two people oppose a bill,” Sawhook said “All bills deserve an up or down vote and these bills have been left pending for too long. Let’s have a vote on them, so we can all move forward”.


Angela Valianos said...

No SUPRISE here !!! CAVEL has their dirty fingers on everyone, they have proven they are above the laws in this land. If an American Company tried all these manuvers we would be shut down in a heartbeat, why do the Foriegn Companies have more rights than AMERICANS? We have spoken and noone listens, sad day in America, land of the free, free for the Foreign Companies that is.

SAD SAD SAD, I am ashamed to be an American at this point.

Angela Valianos

AHDF President said...


As I said, the bills have been pending too long and deserves an up or down vote. We deserve that, but won't get it because of a few Senators who can waylay the will of the majority of the people and the Senate.

The idiotic antics of a judge is nothing new. It seems that they really enjoy legislating from the bench. Nothing new except this time our horses are caught up in it. We are hearing about rashes of horse theft because the plants can't seem to get their horses legally. No horse is safe in this country until we get the federal bans passed.

The actions of a few Senators acting not on behalf of their constituents, but on the behalf of certain special interest groups is what makes me upset. The fact that this goes on every day within our government, so often that it is accepted is plain wrong.

Shelley Sawhook