DocuTicker reports the following excerpt from the APHIS report on the Horse Protection Program and the Slaughter Horse Transport Program
Our review of the slaughter horse transport program found that APHIS needs to improve its controls for ensuring that horses being shipped to foreign plants for slaughter are treated humanely. At present, APHIS does not deny authorization to individuals with a record of inhumanely transporting slaughter horses to ship other loads of horses, even if unpaid fines are pending for previous violations. Regulations simply do not address denying this authority, and so APHIS provides the authorization, regardless of the owner’s history. Without regulations or legislation to establish more meaningful penalties, owners have little incentive to comply with regulations, pay their penalties, and cease inhumanely handling horses bound for slaughter.
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of Inspector General
This is an example of why horse (and any other animal) protection laws must have criminal penalties, not meaningless civil penalties that result only in hand slaps and uncollected fines.
It is also the reason the Int’l Fund for Horses does and will not support legislation with civil rather than criminal repercussions, such as H.R. 305 (Horse Transportation Safety Act of 2009) which is another useless piece of horse protection legislation.