BREAKING: California auctioneer charged for sending horse to slaughter

June 6, 2014, California auctioneer charged for sending horse to slaughter.
Madera County Sherriff and KPIX Channel 5 News reports auctioneer Billy Ray Brown Jr., was arrested and charged in a case involving professional rodeo horses and CA auction records traced to a slaughterhouse in Canada.
Many California (CA) residents are shocked by the news which broke yesterday on the heels of an
investigation probing into the illegal CA trade of horses for slaughter. “It’s been going on for years”, states Katia Louise, Wild For Life Foundation President, Director, Saving America’s Horses. “CA horses through no fault of their own, wind up at these auction houses where known kill-buyers seek to meet their quota as driven by the foreign market for horsemeat.  Once designated as food animals most protections under the humane laws no longer apply to them. The records of their sale(s) are conveniently lost or somehow unavailable, making it next to impossible to trace their torturous journey through the slaughter pipeline.  
The average American doesn’t realize that America's wild and domestic horses and burros are being sold in a seedy underground market for their meat at auction and shipped to slaughter in Mexico and Canada for human consumption abroad. Polls indicate of those Americans who are aware, 80% are opposed to these insidious activities.
The 1998 CA 'Prohibition on Slaughter of Horses and Sale of Horsemeat for Human Consumption' prohibits any person from possessing, transferring, receiving or holding any horse, pony, burro or mule with intent to kill it or have it killed, where the person knows or should know that any part of the animal will be used for human consumption, and provides that a violation constitutes a felony offense.  “But horses are virtually being laundered through auction, trade and backyard barn sales, adds Ms Louise.  “The total lack of enforcement is fueled by an absence of appropriated funds which enables the transfer and transport of equines without regulatory inspections or paper trails.”  Yesterday’s summer camp ponies, today’s racehorses and tomorrow’s family pet ponies whose boarding contracts go unpaid, are disappearing across CA state borders into neighboring states where no protective laws exist.
Just last month, the 2015 Agriculture Appropriations bill was approved by the Senate with defunding language intact, which prohibits federally required inspections of horse slaughter facilities in the United States. Without funding for USDA inspections of horsemeat, horse slaughter plants cannot re-open in the U.S. However, there are no federal laws prohibiting the sale or transport of horses across federal borders to be slaughtered outside of the states.
Due to the absence of this federal protection, over 100,000 American horses are shipped across federal borders to slaughter plants in Mexico and Canada each year. What most people don't realize is that 92% of the horses sent to slaughter are sound, young and healthy. These are among America’s finest and brightest horses; champion show horses, Thoroughbred racehorses, professional rodeo horses and even wild horses taken from their native lands.
What can people do to help the horses?
Get the true facts and help raise awareness. Support Wild For Life Foundation and other reputable anti-slaughter equine rescues and sanctuaries.  Ask your state representatives to support the currently pending federal legislation; HR 1094 and SB 541, (the Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2013), which would prohibit the sale or transport of equines and equine parts in interstate or foreign commerce for human consumption.  Talk to others in your local horse communities and encourage them to implement protective measures to keep horses from being sold, given away or auctioned for slaughter.  Enforceable safety provisions can help assure their horses' safety and welfare for the lifetime of each horse.

Learn more and share:
Watch Saving America's Horses trailer:

Read the June 5th article about the arrest of the CA auctioneer: