Three of the eight men arrested last month in connection with the operation of illegal slaughter houses in Loxahatchee, Florida, have been sentenced after taking plea deals, as ruled by Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Samantha Schosberg Feuer.
One man, 49-year-old Edgar Bica was convicted of cruelty to animals. He received a jail sentence of five months, to be served in the Palm Beach County Jail, plus three years of probation, with the first year on house arrest including a GPS ankle monitor.
Bica’s father, Edegar Bica, 83, was sentenced to 18 months’ probation on charges of felony cruelty to animals and killing animals by non-humane methods.
The third man, Rodobaldo Diaz, 47, received three years’ probation for two animal cruelty charges.
The judge further ruled that the men, who were associated with Paso Fino G.A. Farm, must surrender any animals in their custody and make no contact with any slaughter house operations.
The Paso Fino G.A. Farm, along with two others, was shut down on October 13th after Palm Beach County authorities raided the facilities, on a tip from Miami-based animal rights group, Animal Recovery Mission. Undercover video footage, recorded by members of the group posing as slaughter house customers, served as proof of the long rumoured cruel treatment of animals, including horses, at the farm.
Charges are still pending on five others charged in the investigation by the agricultural crimes unit of the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office.