Animal rights groups like People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and the Animal Legal Defense Fund say
It’s videos like this the one Amy Meyer shot outside the Smith’s meat packaging plant in Draper that the agricultural industry doesn’t want you to see. The video, shot back in February, shows a cow being carried on a bulldozer.
When we spoke to Meyer in April she told ABC 4 Utah, “They were transporting it in a tractor to somewhere and you could see the cow moving around and being hauled away in this tractor and it looked like an act of animal cruelty.
Police were called and Meyer became the first person ever to be charged under
Lawyers involved in the case say more and more of these laws are popping up across the country because the agricultural industry doesn't want images like these to reach the public.
Justin Marceau told ABC 4 Utah, "When the investigations come out public opinion turns and we see a push towards safer, smaller farms and so the industries best response was to shut down the people coming in all together."
Tuesday's filing quotes several of the bill's sponsors defending the need for the law. Rep. John Mathis is quoted as saying these types of undercover investigations are used for quote "the advancement of animal rights nationally, which in our industry we find egregious."
Rep. Michael Noel is quoted as saying he opposes letting "these groups like PETA and some of these organizations control what we do in this country - a country that feeds the world.”
Rep. Lee Perry said the undercover investigations are quote "just another version of domestic terrorism."
The groups fighting
ABC 4 contacted all the lawmakers quoted above and only Rep. Perry responded. He says he spent three years investigating animal crimes as a law enforcement officer for the criminal investigation bureau. While he has no problem with exposing animal abuse, he says it needs to be done the right way by trained investigators.