An Ontario woman has been charged with criminal mischief, but could not be more unapologetic about her alleged crime.
Anita Krajnc, an animal rights activists and member of the group, Toronto Pig Save, was criminally charged for giving water to pigs in the sweltering heat as they were on their way to the slaughterhouse.
On one very hot June day in Burlington, Ontario, Krajnc and her group were protesting in front of Van Boekel Hog Farms as the farm was hauling several animals to Fearman’s Pork slaughterhouse. As Krajnc and her friend waited along the road for the pigs, the truck pulled up and Krajnc gave the animals water while they were in the trailer. The pigs were extremely hot as they began their 62 mile trip to their death.
The truck’s driver, Jeffrey Veldjesgraaf, then got out of the truck and began arguing with the women. The incident was captured on video and the confrontation went as follows:
Kranjc: “Have some compassion, have some compassion!”
Driver: “Let’s call the cops.”
Kranjc: “Call Jesus.”
Driver: “Yeah, no. What do you got in that water?”
Driver: “No, no, how do I know?”
Kranjc: “Trust me.”
Driver: “Don’t put it in there again.”
Kranjc: “If this pig is thirsty, they’ll have water.”
Driver: “You do it again and I’ll slap it out of your hands.”
Kranjc: “Go ahead, if you want an assault charge, go ahead! Film this, film this, film this!”
The footage then shows the driver getting back in the truck and driving away.
The next day, the farm’s owner, Eric Van Boekel, filed a complaint with police.
In an interview, Van Boekel stated that, “They can protest all they want – they have the right of freedom of speech that thousands of soldiers have died for. I have no problem with them protesting; just leave my stuff alone.”
Shortly after the incident, a Halton Regional police officer served a summons to Krajnc and she was charged with mischief under $5,000.
Krajnc stated that, “I think it’s an outrageous charge and goes against my deepest philosophical beliefs in terms of what all our obligations are, and to me the most important thing in life is to be of service to others and to someone or some animal who is suffering.”
She added that, “I will not admit guilt to what I did – it’s the right thing to do and we will continue to do it.”
In contrast, Van Boekel promised he would “go to the full extent of the law to stop them.”
He adamantly said that, “If you’re driving down the road and you have your window down and you come to an intersection and I feel you need some water or a drink, how would you feel if I stick my hands in your personal space? Those animals are well provided for and well cared for.”
Krajnc is just as adamant in what she believes in. She says she and Toronto Pig Save will provide water to pigs as they travel to the same slaughterhouse on Thursday – one day after making her court appearance.