Alberta horse slaughterhouse probed by RCMP

Hidden camera video also prompts food inspection agency investigation

Cross-posted from the CBC

A slaughterhouse in Fort Macleod, Alta., owned by a Calgary company is under investigation by the RCMP over allegations that it has been killing horses inhumanely at its facility.

Police opened the file after the Canadian Horse Defence Coalition made a complaint against Bouvry Horse Exports Ltd, which sells horse meat to international markets.

The animal rights group says a secretly recorded video was sent to them showing horses at the Fort Macleod slaughterhouse being shot and then hoisted away by their legs while still fully conscious.

“It’s currently under investigation. We’re speaking with the SPCA as well,” said Sgt. Brent Hawker, with the RCMP detachment in Fort Macleod.

“If there’s a criminal offence that’s been committed, we’ll lay charges.”

Claude Bouvry, one of the owners of the plant, denied the allegations of inappropriate slaughtering on Thursday.

“We are supervised at all times, and the SPCA can visit at anytime,” he told CBC News in an interview.

Bouvry said six CFIA officials and a veterinarian are always present during the slaughtering process at his facility.

According to the group that made the allegations, workers can be seen in the video repeatedly failing to kill horses with one rifle shot, and then leaving the animals in pain for a prolonged period.

“I feel that the footage from the Bouvry plant shows levels of suffering that are unacceptable,” said Dr. Mary Richardson, a veterinarian with the coalition.

–> Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/calgary/story/2010/04/22/calgary-horse-bouvry-slaughterhouse-rcmp-cruelty-inhumane.html#ixzz0lsFXBjdl

Bouvry’s and Richlieu were both investigated. Here are some of the ones who died at Richlieu.

–> View related images from CETFA on Flckr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cetfa/

–> For links to all investigative media, visit the Canadian Horse Defence Coalition website.

–> Back the work of this excellent organization with a donation.

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