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Lawsuit targets Idaho’s Ag Security Act

A coalition of animal rights and other groups is seeking to overturn Idaho's new Ag Security Act, which was signed into law Feb. 28. The groups have filed a federal lawsuit in U.S. District Court against the act, which makes it a crime to interfere with agricultural operations.
Sean Ellis

Capital Press

Published on March 17, 2014 9:17AM

BOISE — A coalition of animal rights, civil liberties and food safety groups has filed a federal lawsuit that seeks to overturn Idaho's recently passed Ag Security Act, which makes it a crime to interfere with agricultural operations.

According to a news release, the lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Idaho by the Animal Legal Defense Fund, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, the American Civil Liberties Union of Idaho, the Center for Food Safety and the Idaho Hispanic Caucus.

A press conference to announce the suit against what the group calls the “Ag Gag” law was held March 17 in the State Capitol.

The bill would make it a crime for someone to gain employment in an Idaho agricultural operation through deception and then cause economic harm and other damage to the operation.

It would also prohibit people from making an audio or video recording of the facility’s operations without the owner’s consent.

Anyone found guilty of violating the law could be charged with a misdemeanor and sentenced to up to one year in prison and fined up to $5,000.

Gov. Butch Otter signed the bill into law Feb. 28.


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