Jose Luis Zuniga-Lira pled no contest on Friday after being caught on hidden camera violently stabbing cows with a screwdriver and brutally whipping their faces and bodies with a metal chain. Zuniga-Lira was convicted of two counts of criminal animal cruelty in the Chaves County District Court in New Mexico. He was given concurrent sentences of 364 days imprisonment, suspended pending his successful completion of probation.
Mercy For Animals’ investigation at Winchester Dairy exposed multiple workers at the Roswell, New Mexico farm maliciously beating cows, dragging them with tractors, and shocking them in the genitals with electric prods. Three other individuals, whose cases are still pending, have also been charged with multiple counts of animal cruelty.
MFA praises the New Mexico Livestock Board and the Chaves County District Attorney’s Office for pursuing justice for these abused and exploited animals.
Watch the footage that led to the conviction here:
At the time of MFA’s investigation, Winchester Dairy provided milk to Leprino Foods, the world’s largest mozzarella cheese producer and a supplier to virtually all major national pizza chains, including Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, and Domino’s. Immediately after the investigation’s release, Leprino Foods dropped Winchester Dairy as a supplier, and following discussions with MFA, announced one of the most comprehensive animal welfare policies ever adopted by a major U.S. dairy company.
Although this is a step in the right direction, the best way to protect dairy cows and all farmed animals is to choose healthy and compassionate alternatives to meat, eggs, and dairy. Visit ChooseVeg.com to learn more!