Bavaria: Further criminal charges in the Miltenberg slaughterhouse scandal – Bavaria

In the scandal surrounding the terrible animal cruelty at a slaughterhouse in the district of Miltenberg, animal rights activist Friedrich Mülln has filed a criminal complaint on suspicion of commercial fraud. “Based on our film recordings, we assume that the meat of the visibly ill animals that were not transportable and that were slaughtered there was brought to the butcher’s trade as normal,” says Mülln. “That’s cheating on the customer. According to the law, the meat should have been disposed of as waste.”

At the same time, Mülln, who heads the animal rights organization Soko Tierschutz, sharply criticizes state and federal politics. “The cruelty to animals in Miltenberg is the 15th scandal at slaughterhouses in Germany that Soko Tierschutz has made public in the last six years,” he says. “Nothing happened, although it has long been clear that the torture is systematic.”

The Greens are also taking the state government to court. “Hardly a week without a new animal welfare scandal in Bavaria,” says Green politician and chairwoman of the environmental committee in the state parliament, Rosi Steinberger. “And what is the Söder government doing? It’s snoring!” The Greens have been calling for significant improvements in animal welfare for years. “More controls are needed at slaughterhouses, video surveillance, recording and evaluation for all slaughterhouses,” says Steinberger. From her point of view, too, the current scandals are “not regrettable isolated cases, but the consequences of the policies of this government”.

Meanwhile, Mülln has presented a list of demands. A central point is consistent video surveillance of large and small slaughterhouses. However, it should not be subordinate to the companies, but must be subordinate to the central Bavarian control authority for food monitoring and veterinary affairs. Only in this way can it fulfill its meaning and purpose. Furthermore, Mülln demands bodycams for the veterinary staff in the slaughterhouses and the four-eyes-principle during controls. “Two official veterinarians always have to check together,” he says. He wants to rule out cheating between inspectors and slaughterhouse staff.

The catalog also includes smaller measures that, according to Mülln, can be implemented immediately and without great effort and could help avert the worst animal cruelty. One example is the introduction of mandatory certification and testing for stunning devices. “This could drastically reduce the number of incorrect stunnings that are the order of the day in slaughterhouses,” says Mülln. Or a ban on electric propulsion aids. They may legally only be used in exceptional cases. But according to Mülln, their use is the order of the day. In the Miltenberg slaughterhouse, the Soko Tierschutz Laut Mülln documented how a cattle dealer shocked a severely injured cow with around a hundred electric shocks.

Minister Glauber calls for rapid clarification

Environment Minister Thorsten Glauber, who is responsible for animal welfare in Bavaria, calls for the new scandal to be clarified quickly. Animal welfare violations like in Miltenberg are unacceptable. “We expect tough and consistent intervention by the responsible authorities,” said a spokesman. “Legal violations must be pursued consistently.” He pointed out that the federal government is currently working on changing the law so that large slaughterhouses can be permanently monitored by video. Bavaria supports the initiative.

The animal welfare scandal in the Miltenberg slaughterhouse is the second that Soko Tierschutz has published in Lower Franconia within two weeks. Previously, she had documented massive torture at the Aschaffenburg slaughterhouse. Both operations have been temporarily closed. In both cases, the public prosecutor is investigating.

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