Horses on slaughter truck. HSUS photo.

13 Investigates: Indiana horses sent to slaughter

Horses on slaughter truck. HSUS photo.
Horses on slaughter truck. HSUS photo.

Cross-posted from WTHR-TV Ch. 13 Indianapolis
BOB SEGALL / 13 INVESTIGATES

Indianapolis — Despite the closure of all horse slaughterhouses in the United States, 13 Investigates has discovered thousands of Indiana horses are still ending up on dinner plates. A 3-month Eyewitness News investigation shows local horses are being slaughtered for their meat following a long journey that begins in Indiana, and undercover video raises questions about how the horses are killed.

Race horses, work horses, and ponies that used to be pets – they are among thousands of horses sold each year at livestock auctions in Indiana.

The auctions are the beginning of a long pipeline that fuels a multi-million dollar horse meat industry, and an Eyewitness News undercover investigation followed that pipeline to see how it works.

Many of the horses begin their journey at the Shipshewana Horse Auction in northern Indiana.

This month, WTHR attended the auction and watched one man purchase most of the horses. Jeroslav Gold, owner of Roping J Ranch in Fair Haven, Mich., is known as a “kill buyer” because many of the horses he buys are sent to slaughter.

After Gold bought dozens of horses in Shipshewana, they were taken to a large holding pen behind the auction barn. Thirty-six hours later, just before midnight on a Saturday evening, the horses were loaded onto a livestock trailer and transported to his farm. 13 Investigates then followed a truckload of Gold’s horses to Canada, where they were delivered to the Viande Richelieu slaughterhouse in Massueville, Quebec.

The 15-hour truck ride from Shipshewana to Richelieu (stops not included) covers more than 800 miles.

The animal rights activists closed down all the [US] slaughterhouses, so that’s fine and dandy,” Gold said. “But the real end result of their work is horses now go to Canada and Mexico on long trips. They’re still being slaughtered, so what did that accomplish?

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14 thoughts on “13 Investigates: Indiana horses sent to slaughter”

  1. They talk about too many horses, well, if people like the American Quarter horse Assoc., the race horse assoc. would stop the over breeding. Not mentioning the horses that used to make women hormones. All over breeding, for nothing but money. When it comes to a life of a car or a horse, a horse has a heart, feelings. The car is a pill of metal. How cold that ass was.
    Now we have our government sending our wild horses and burros to slaughter. What great people, like the blm along with our government, ranchers (horse haters), a few other. If these people weren’t killing our horses or other livestock, they probably be killing other things.
    But, how do we get this to stop.? Besides keeping push forward, full steam ahead.

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  2. I won’t tell you anything new, but this is the same with everything in life.
    You’d think past teaches us at least anything, but that’s so rare.
    Hate all you want but the world changes, and none of us have no control over it.
    For instance, imagine Barack had enough balls to put Vladimir to his place, but it seems like it’s never happening, welcome third world war.
    A very deep post, thanks!
    Sarah http://phyto-renew350i.com/

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  3. There will be a peaceful protest at 11th and I Street – East entry to State Capitol from 10-1 on April 26, 2014. Please come if you are in or near Sacramento.

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  4. If anyone lives in the Bay Area there is a peaceful protest that will be going on from 11 AM till 1 PM on 4-26-2014 on the plaza at Golden Gate Bridge in California to protest horse slaughter.
    Its to bad there wasn’t any place to leave a comment about this article I have a good idea there would have been plenty of them going after not only the professor but the kill buyers as well. There was plenty of cruelty in the US slaughter plants and these fools still want to bring it back claiming the US is better than Canada or Mexico. If Canada does stop US horses from being slaughtered because of the drugs all of them will be funneled to Mexico. It is critical that the Safe Act be passed call your senators and rep go after them about initiating a discharge petition to bring the bill out of committee so it can be brought to the floor for a vote because time is running out. There seems to be a Oklahoma politician that is working against the passage of the Safe Act named Frank Lucas why does that not surprise me.

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    1. I’m not too far from the Bay area. Maybe I can attend if my dad would be willing to drive me down there. I wrote a horse slaughter essay for social studies. Maybe I can hand out some copies.

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  5. At least Jeroslav Gold shipped them promptly to slaughter- unlike Jeff Hayes of Dupont Indiana, George Jones of Maysville KY or Larry Browning of Butler Kentucky. Those three kill buyers had collecting station farms where they held hundreds of horses during this brutal winter and allowed them to starve to death – only finally getting in trouble with their local law for leaving dead horses laying around- all three cases within 100 miles of each other and within a 13 week period. For some reason there are many killer buyers who aren’t even shipping- perhaps the cost of fuel- and they have so little invested in the animals it’s much cheaper to starve them them to death and take the loss than feed them for no hope of profit. These unwanted horses are so cheap and plentiful that it costs more to feed one for a month than it costs to buy it- they are often given away for free- the kill collectors taking advantage of people’s hard time and inability to afford their horses or their inability or unwillingness to pay money for humane euthanasia and carcass disposal.The slaughter issue is very complex. I’d be interested to see an investigation on the three aforementioned men and the reason why they didn’t take the horses to the slaughterhouse before they were walking skeletons.

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    1. Thank you for posting this comment. I admit it gave me the shivers, imagining the horrors these horses suffered. It is unconscionable and I don’t see how people who commit these crimes justify it to themselves. Many could care less, but I do feel for the people who have held onto their horses as long as they can, no one left to help them and they see no other way out. As you say it is a complex issue. People should put money aside for the event of their horse’s passing or to euthanize them if it looks like they are going to starve. Starvation is a long, horrible psychological as well as physical death. Sending them to slaughter when they can barely stand after all that is … well what words are there left …?

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    2. Sadly Sarah you are right. My rescue is less than 5 miles of Gold’s farm. I hate him, believe me I do, but by comparison to some of the other kill buyers, he is way more humane than most. I stood right next to Oneil Muirhead when he admitted at an auction that if he won the 4 year old pony mare with the 1 month old foal by her side that he “has no use for that baby, I’ll just shoot it and ship the mom”

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  6. I guess it never ends…The cruel inhumane actions of human beings ..Their love of money is by far greater than the love of a life….This too make me sick….What can be done?….Please let us all know ……Shy of blocking the trucks with our bodies which I’m sure they will just run over us and sending letters I’m not sure what can be done…We need to help all of these beautiful animals not have to endure this anymore….I know my 2 horses escaped going to slaughter when I purchased them Thank the Lord they are a true gift from God.

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  7. THis kill buyer and his ilk, auctioneers, transporters mock the American public who have made it clear we do not want our horses slaughtered. The fact is these people don’t care one whit about the intent of law. They will find every hole and plow through it, as long as it puts a bloody buck in theoir pocket.

    The only weapon we have is our voice. Call and bug your congressmen and senators – send them this article and ask them if they enjoy rubbing elbows with Mr Gold? Ban horse sllaughter AND transport to slaughter! Canada is working on their problems. Mexico is so damned corrupt and brutal, we can only stop the transport. Today, call again.

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  8. What it has accomplished so far is… 1. More Americans are now aware of what barbaric cruelty is happening to the animals from auction to slaughter. 2. More Americans and other Countries are now finally seeing that the meat from horses is toxic to humans as they are NOT raised for food purposes.

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  9. OMG !!!!! It just keeps getting worse !!!! This really upsets me I had no Idea this was also going on ???? Have they all gone completely mad???????I cannot and WILL NOT accept this !! What can we do there are so many horror avenues ,everywhere you turn it make me sick !!!!!! What can we do to close those Slaughter Plants in Canada and Mexico ???????? We need to organize groups for each of these Horrors, we water ourselves down and spread ourselves to thin , these things need to stopped !!!! Geeze , what do we have to do to get through to these people, they dont and wont give horsemeat to dogs anymore it is hazardous to their health ,why would a human want to eat it ???????? If they have a death wish find another way !!!!!! step in front of a bus or something leave the damn Horses alone !!!!!!!

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