Horse slaughterhouse opening on hold

Valley Meat Plant

Our hopes have come true, at least for a while, in New Mexico where a state judge has temporarily put a halt on horse slaughter due to the NM Attorney General’s lawsuit. Perhaps this will truly be the Year of the Horse.~ HfH

From: Albuquerque Journal
By: Lauren Villagran

Valley Meat New Mexico

A state district judge has issued a restraining order temporarily preventing this Roswell slaughterhouse from opening. Owner Valley Meat Co. wants to use the building for horse slaughter. (Pat Vasquez-Cunningham/Albuquerque Journal)

A state district judge on Monday issued a temporary restraining order to prevent a Roswell horse slaughterhouse from opening this week before a hearing scheduled for Friday.

The company previously said it planned to open on Jan. 1.

Valley Meat Co. attorney Blair Dunn said the company expected to wait to start operations until management has clarity on two remaining hurdles: the lawsuit filed by State Attorney General Gary King in the 1st Judicial District earlier this month and a wastewater discharge permit required by the state Environment Department.

Judge Matthew Wilson scheduled a hearing for Friday for Valley Meat to show cause for why the temporary restraining order “should not be extended or a preliminary injunction issued,” according to the order.

The potential opening of what would be New Mexico’s only horse-slaughtering facility has been at the heart of an emotional debate over how the state, and the nation, should handle unwanted horses. Currently, the U.S. exports tens of thousands of horses to Mexico and Canada each year, an unknown percentage destined for slaughter.

The Valley Meat plant previously was a beef slaughterhouse, but has been closed since March 2012.

In the lawsuit, King charged that Valley Meat has chronically failed to comply with state environmental and safety laws over the years, and sought a temporary restraining order, as well as a preliminary and permanent injunction to prevent the slaughterhouse from opening.

Dunn denies the allegations against Valley Meat, saying of King’s lawsuit, “Their legal claim is not substantiated.”

The attorney general filed his lawsuit after a federal appeals judge rescinded an injunction that had kept the slaughterhouse from opening as a separate lawsuit winds its way through the federal appeals system

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AUTHOR: Amber Barnes
  • karen

    YES! PLEASE! May 2014 be the Year of the Horse and the SAFE Act because horses are friends, not food.

    December 31, 2013
  • Nancy Albin

    Dunn Denies the allegations?… how can he? Havn’t they been sited for these allegations of not complying with environmental safety laws & not to mention cruelty to animals a violation not once but many times, so how are they gonna get around this this time? They got the judge on there side before we can not let this happen again!!! Why can’t they see? Is that Dunn that good? I thought valley meat owner was in hardship so sad no money to support his family where is he getting the money for Dunn!!!??? Its not the Horses fault the piece of —- doesn’t know how to do anything but torture & slaughter! Hey even to be a Dominuiqtras has to be “submissive” before she can have slaves in a dungeon so I think its time for “Mr. valley meat slaughter house be re trained so he can do it in a “HUMANE” way. !!! hahah ” right!! I’m sorry I have to do more to make this end I miss my Wild Horses in my yard !! We have to do something for this case to make this judge see the reality!!!

    December 31, 2013
  • cindy

    hi,boy am i happy about this,but thats only a few days and by the way what is that other lawsuit? can i ask maybe a silly question:where is the e p a in all this ,just asking asking cause they have their big fat nose in everything else,sucker (using term loosely) well you got my e-mail happy new year all

    December 31, 2013
    • Daniel Cordero

      The other lawsuit is the federal one, that is, the one about USDA not complying with NEPA when issuing the ruling granting inspections to the plant. That also answers your second question.

      January 2, 2014