Mr. Kiehl was arrested by New York State Police on I-81 northbound in the Town Of Dickinson in the hours before dawn on Tuesday August 17, 1999. Inside the double deck cattle trailer were 19 horses from the auction in New Holland, PA destined for a Canadian slaughterhouse.
The horsemeat is for human consumption overseas.
Mr. Kiehl was charged with 19 misdemeanor counts of Section 359, Carrying animal in a cruel manner;
13 misdemeanor counts of Sec 359a 2;
"Every vehicle utilized for the transportation of more than six horses over a highway shall have no more than one tier holding animals in the compartment containing horses."
3 misdemeanor counts Section 359-a 1a.
" The interiors of compartments containing horses shall be constructed of smooth materials, containing no sharp objects or protrusions which are hazardous";
13 misdemeanor counts 359-a.1(g)
"Each compartment containing horses shall be of such height so as to allow sufficient clearance above the poll and withers of each horse in the compartment";
Mr. Kiehl faced possible jail time and a $1000.00 fine for each of the 38 counts due to his previous convictions under New York Ag and Markets Section 359-a
In a pre-trial conference on November 16, 1999 in Dickinson Town Court on 38 misdemeanor counts of the illegal transport of horses Mr. Kiehl's attorney, Joel Scelsci, rejected a plea offer extended by Broome County Assistant District Attorney, ADA, Kevin Graham.
The case was later turned over to ADA Chris Simser. The misdemeanor counts were reduced to violations, also reducing the possible fines from $1000.00 per count to $250.00 per count for a total of $9500.00 instead of the original $38,000.
The DA's office and Mr. Kiehl entered a plea agreement where Mr. Kiehl pled guilty to one count each of transporting horses in a double deck trailer, insufficient clearance and protrusions hazardous to horses.
In previous incidents Mr. Kiehl has stated that he believed it was legal to transport horses in the bottom deck of a double decker as long as he has no animals on the top deck. Mr. Kiehl has now PLED GUILTY in New York to transporting horses in a double deck trailer with no animals on the top deck. Mr. Kiehl has also been convicted in PA of transporting horses in a cruel manner due to use of a double deck trailer.
The Broome County District Attorneys Office has successfully prosecuted Mr. Kiehl and Kevin Nickerson of Nickerson Livestock in previous cases involving the illegal transport of horses. Fines of $4600.00 have been levied by judges in Broome County against Nickerson Livestock and Mr. Kiehl.
In Manheim Township, PA Arlow Kiehl, Watertown, NY, was convicted of cruelty to horses for transporting 17 horses and mules in a double deck cattle trailer on August 15, 2000. District Justice David Miller found Mr. Kiehl guilty after a 2 hour hearing and fined him $200.00 plus court costs.
The PA State Police, Troop J, Ephrata barracks arrested Mr. Kiehl and his driver, Harold Rodgers, Lowville, NY on Route 30 in Lancaster County on June 24, 2000. Mr. Kiehl was transporting the 17 horses and mules from the New Holland Sales Stables and Mel Hoovers, both in New Holland, PA to Watertown, NY, a distance of 381 miles and 6 hours. The horses' final destination was Canada to be slaughtered for human consumption overseas. In addition to the horses there was an unknown number of hogs on the top deck above the horses.
Upon inspection of the trailer, the PA State Police determined that the ceiling height was 6'. Due to the low ceiling height, the horses and mules were unable to hold their heads in a normal upright manner. Trailers of the same size designed to transport horses have standard ceiling heights of 8 feet. During the hearing, a licensed PA equine veterinarian testified that the low ceiling height was indeed forcing the horses to be transported in an inhumane manner.
Mr. Kiehl is appealing his conviction in Lancaster County Court on Monday April 16, 2001 at 1 PM. The court is open to the public.
The Equine Protection Network, formerly the Equine Placement Network, EPN, has successfully pressed for the enforcement of the current horse anti-cruelty laws both in PA and New York.
Stepped up enforcement by the New York State Police of New York's humane horse transport law in recent years has resulted in fines approaching $20,000 against 3 different shippers of slaughterbound horses. One company, Frank Carper & Sons, Cranbury, NJ, has refused to pay the $11,100 fine levied against them in 1994 by Judge Jean Strothenke in Schroon Lake, Essex County, NY.
Trail of Torture