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UPDATE: Judge rules slaughter ban constitutional

Published: Thursday, July 5, 2007 12:00 a.m. CDT

A federal judge ruled Thursday afternoon that Illinois’ ban on horse slaughter is constitutional, after a six-week legal battle between the state and Cavel International, a DeKalb slaughterhouse that was the only facility in the country still processing horse meat for overseas diners. “Basically, Judge (Frederick) Kapala didn’t dismiss the case, but he ruled that the complaint did not establish any violations of the Constitution or federal law, and is therefore denying the motion for injunction,” Assistant DeKalb County State’s Attorney John Farrell said. “This is what we were hoping he would enter last week instead of the judgment he did enter, which suspended the case pending the outcome of the Humane Society’s appeal.” On June 25 Kapala issued a statement saying he lacked jurisdiction to rule on the case until a federal appeals court determined whether The Humane Society of the United States could intervene in the case as a defendant. The appeals court said Tuesday that Kapala did have jurisdiction, and ordered him to make a final judgment before moving ahead on the appeal. Farrell said he expects Cavel to appeal the ruling. See Friday’s Daily Chronicle for more details on the judgment.

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