Woman Could Go to Prison for Giving Thirsty Pigs Water

Anita Krajnc tried to give the pigs a sip on their way to be slaughtered
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 1, 2015 7:57 AM CST
Updated Dec 5, 2015 12:00 PM CST

"Jesus said, 'If they are thirsty, give them water.'" The "they" in this case were pigs packed into a tractor-trailer en route to an Ontario slaughterhouse on June 22, and the speaker of that sentence—which is captured on video—is Anita Krajnc. The 48-year-old Canadian animal-rights activist did indeed try to give the creatures water when the truck was stopped at a light, and she could end up in prison for as many as 10 years for it, reports the Guardian. The CBC spoke with Krajnc, who says her group Toronto Pig Save stakes out a spot once a week on a traffic island along the route to the Fearmans Pork processing plant to "bear witness of suffering of animals." Krajnc has been charged with criminal mischief in connection with this particular act of witnessing, and the charge carries a punishment ranging from a fine to the aforementioned sentence.

Video of the incident shows driver Jeffery Veldjesgraaf exiting the vehicle to explicitly tell Krajnc not to give the animals anything. After she quotes Jesus, he responds, "You know what? These are not humans, you dumb frickin' broad." Their interaction doesn't get much more pleasant: He says he's going to dial 911 and tells her that if she gives the pigs another drink, "I'll slap [the bottle] out of your hands." "Go ahead, if you want assault charges," replies Krajnc, who was the one who found herself charged after the owner of the pigs, Eric Van Boekel, filed a police complaint the next day. Van Boekel tells the Guardian he wanted to ensure his product wasn't tampered with in an unsafe way; indeed, the video shows Veldjesgraaf questioning whether it's just water Krajnc is giving the animals. A pre-trial hearing was held Monday, and her next court date is Dec. 15; Krajnc's case isn't expected to go to trial until August. (A woman who stopped for ducks ended up in jail.)

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