NaturalNews has confirmed that the Michigan Department of Natural Resources has carried out two armed raids on pig farmers in Kalkaska and Cheboygan counties. The raids were carried out by ten armed officers in six vehicles against law-abiding farmers on suspicion they harbored alive what, until recently, were considered traditional livestock.
Off the Grid News warned of such acts last month as the State of Michigan was preparing to ramp up its newly worded Invasive Species Act. The Michigan statute targets family farms and breeds of pigs normally considered safe and breeds of choice for many restaurants.
Possession of just a single such animal is now a felony crime in Michigan and punishable by up to four years in prison. Though the pigs listed in the Invasive Species Act have been raised by farmers and ranchers for decades without any negative impact on the environment, it is now a felony to own them.
One farmer made the unenviable decision of destroying his own pigs before the DNR arrived on his property. His livelihood is now completely destroyed, as the state of Michigan has put him out of business.
In spite of the farmer’s cooperation, the DNR proceeded to illegally acquire a search warrant by providing false information to a court judge. It then conducted an armed raid to verify the entire herd of pigs had indeed been destroyed.
“I think this is an unconstitutional order, these actions of the DNR are way out of bounds,” attorney Joseph O’Leary told NaturalNews. “To take what was six months ago an entirely legal activity, and suddenly people are felons over it. They’re not growing drugs, running guns or killing anybody, they’re raising animals pursuant to USDA regulations and state of Michigan regulations. They haven’t done anything wrong here, and the DNR is treating them like they are hardened criminals.”
Another farmer, Ron McKendrick, was raided on Saturday, ending a two week event in which his place was staked out for three days, his customers were “interviewed” by armed officers, and his meat processor was so intimidated she won’t take his hogs, but fears her business will suffer greatly due to the loss of business.
In spite of the fact that McKendrick was working away from his farm in Detroit the DNR still obtained a restraining order against him. And, in spite of the fact he never received any paperwork informing him of court actions, he is now facing a suit for not obeying the ISO.
BakerGreenAcres.com reported the following quote from one of the targeted farmers:
“I was served a search warrant yesterday at 7: 45am. I have killed all my hogs. [DNR] gave me papers that say I do not have any hogs on my property. All they saw were dead hogs laying around from my mass slaughtering. It took 12 guys 4 times in there to kill all of them, sows with young, pregnant sows, dozens of piglets, and old mature boars. It has been a sad few weeks. Does anyone know what it feels like to open fire on 20 baby piglets in one group which weigh between 5 lbs and 15 lbs. They are so adorable and cute. They commented to everyone that they never saw a fence built so tough and no way would a hog get out of this area.”
No government agency or agent has the right to terrorize citizens in the ways witnessed in Michigan. The DNR of that state should be reminded of the tenants of lawful government and the rights of citizens, slapped down heavily by the courts, and be forced to make restitution to the farmers whose livelihoods they have destroyed.
© 2012 Off the Grid News