A Litigation Article from All-Creatures.org




The Excelsior 4: Activists Charged for Exposing Criminal Animal Cruelty

From Excelsior4.org
August 2022

The remaining 3 of The Excelsior 4 went on trial by jury in the BC Supreme Court, and used that opportunity to further expose the rampant violence and suffering in animal agriculture, and the complicity of our justice and enforcement systems. As a result, Roy was acquitted. Amy and Nick were convicted.

Excelsior 4

Animal activists Amy Soranno, Nick Schafer, Roy Sasano and Geoff Regier - known as the Excelsior 4 - faced 21 indictable offences (the highest criminal level in Canadian court), for revealing what happens to animals inside factory farms.

In the spring of 2019, video footage taken from inside Excelsior Hog Farm (and released by PETA) showed crowded pens full of thousands of pigs suffering from hernias, bloody lacerations, and golf-ball sized growths. Some couldn’t even walk, so they languished and slowly died on the filthy concrete floor. Dead pigs were found rotting in pens with other live pigs who were eating their dead bodies, and others had been thrown into garbage bins.

On April 28, 2019, the Excelsior 4 and nearly 200 other activists descended on Excelsior Hog Farm, conducting a ‘Meat the Victims’ action. Approximately 130 activists staged a protest outside of the farm property, while 65 others occupied the farm and live-streamed what they saw - row upon row of pregnant pigs crammed inside metal crates the size of their own bodies, unable to even turn around or move for months on end. So many pigs were severely neglected, frothing at the mouth, crippled, left to suffer and die from sickness and injuries. As a result, they generated mass National and International media attention. Amy, Nick and Roy were arrested at this event; however, Amy was the only activist taken into custody and charged.

A few months later, video footage from a hidden camera was released, showing the owners and operators of Excelsior Hog Farm conducting criminal animal cruelty, including electric prodding the pigs in the face, repeatedly hitting and kicking the animals, and cutting off the tails and testicles of screaming piglets with no pain relief. Amy’s initial court proceedings were postponed while an intensive investigation took place.

As a result of the investigation, the other 3 activists - Nick Schafer, Roy Sasano and Geoff Regier - were also charged. The Excelsior 4 faced a combined 21 indictable offences of Break and Enter and Mischief, with each Break and Enter holding the potential of up to 10 years in jail.

After pre-trial hearings, Geoff’s case was dropped.

The remaining 3 of The Excelsior 4 went on trial by jury in the BC Supreme Court, and used that opportunity to further expose the rampant violence and suffering in animal agriculture, and the complicity of our justice and enforcement systems. As a result, Roy was acquitted. Amy and Nick were convicted.

Excelsior 4


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