The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has exposed the Westland Meat Co., one of the nation's leading suppliers of the school lunch program, for the illegal slaughter and sale of sick and downer cattle. The USDA forbids the sale of sick or downer cattle, because they exhibit a higher rate of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) or mad cow disease. The HSUS revelation, resulted in the largest BSE related beef recall in U.S. history. The USDA failed to detect this illegal activity notwithstanding having a reported 8 on site inspectors.
The HSUS brought a False Claim Act (FCA) suit against Westland Meat Co., reportedly resulting in a treble damages judgment of approximately 500 million. A settlement agreement reduced the now bankrupt company's liability to approximately 155 million, of which approximately 3 million will be paid out of most of the remaining assets of the company's owners and investors.
The HSUS substantiated the illegal acts with the below undercover video, showing slaughterhouse employees beating and dragging ill and downer cattle to the slaughter. Please be advised that the below video is graphic in nature and is for mature audiences only. Once again a governmental agency designed to protect our families and children, has failed to fulfill its purpose. Thankfully, in this one case, we had the HSUS to do the job of the USDA.
Long Island Lawyer
Paul A. Lauto, Esq.