Animal rights activists acquitted of stealing piglets
After a group of animal activists posted a video of themselves stealing two pigs in 2017 from Circle Four Farms, located in Beaver County, Utah, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) launched an investigation into various farms located in Colorado and Utah in search of evidence weeks after the initial posting of the video. As one of the biggest producers of pork in the world, Smithfield Foods did not experience any damaging financial loss. Most issues arose when the activists chose to post that video, in which they exposed the mistreatment of the pigs living in the animal sanctuary. The activists also explained how mass-producing meat companies like Smithfield throw out and starve sick animals, prompting them to “save” two piglets by bringing them to their own facility and revitalizing the pigs. After investigating multiple farms across Utah and Colorado, the FBI was unable to recover the stolen piglets and did not press charges. Conversely, several prosecutors in Utah pressed theft charges against two of the animal activists. However, a jury acquitted the two activists on Oct. 8, and the judge of the trial gave the verdict without the jury further considering the testimonies of the activists. The decision shocked both the activists and representatives from Smithfield Farms and is a point of celebration for many animal activists.