A woman who gave water to a truck-load of pigs on their way to the slaughterhouse is now facing the threat of up to 10 years in jail or a fine of £2,500.
The sight of the animals sweltering on a hot day in June was too much for Anita Krajnc who felt the animals should at least have some water on their journey to the slaughterhouse but what was meant as a humanitarian gesture has now left Ms Krajnc facing charges of ‘criminal mischief’.
The story is fast becoming a global cause for animal rights activists as, under Canadian law, pigs are treated as property and can be transported for up to 36 hours without food, water or rest.
However Ms Krajnc – who earns her living as a consultant on a number of animal welfare projects and runs Toronto Pig Save – became involved in a confrontation with the truck driver when she poked a water bottle into the truck to water the thirsty animals. The following day, Ms Krajnc was told by police that there had been a complaint against her.
Eric van Boekel, who made the complaint, said:
She has the right to protest and make her views known. What she does not have the right to do is put my livestock in jeopardy. The problem is when the light turns green. It is not going to be a matter of if someone gets hurt, but when. I don’t want the responsibility of somebody getting maimed.
Farmers have argued that Ms Krajnc’s gesture actually increased the pigs’ suffering as they fought each other to snatch a gulp of water from the bottle.
But Ms Krajnc has global support and she is refusing to back down believing she had “a duty to give food to the hungry and water to the thirsty. I won’t accept a fine, I would rather go to prison.”
Watch this space.