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Chilliwack company pleads guilty in chicken abuse case

·1 min read
An undercover video shot by the non-profit animal advocacy group Mercy for Animals sparked an investigation into allegations of cruelty. (Mercy for Animals - image credit)
An undercover video shot by the non-profit animal advocacy group Mercy for Animals sparked an investigation into allegations of cruelty. (Mercy for Animals - image credit)

A B.C. poultry farming company has pleaded guilty to two charges for causing undue suffering to chickens, following an investigation sparked by an undercover video.

Elite Farm Services Ltd. of Chilliwack entered the pleas Monday in B.C. Supreme Court, the Public Prosecution Service of Canada confirmed.

The charges under the Health of Animals Regulations say no person shall load or unload animals in a way likely to cause injury or undue suffering.

The company was originally charged in December 2018 alongside its president, Dwayne Dueck, and Ontario-based Sofina Foods Inc.

The B.C. SPCA opened an investigation in response to the release of video footage showing hens stuck in mounds of feces and packed into wire cages with dead birds.

When the footage was publicized, Dueck said it "sickened" him and the company took "immediate corrective action."

Future court dates are still scheduled for Dueck and Sofina, and pleas have not been entered, according to a clerk in the B.C. Supreme Court registry.

A date for sentencing for Elite Farm Services has yet to be set.

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