The settlement will be covering lawsuit fees (Photo: Jo-Anne McArthur / Oikeutta Eläimille)
The Utah Attorney General’s Office has agreed to pay $349,000 to settle a lawsuit challenging the ‘Ag-Gag’ law.
The law was implemented in 2012 in Utah, and banned undercover investigations at factory farms.
In 2013, animal rights groups PETA, Mercy For Animals [MFA], and In Defense of Animals teamed up with Amy Meyer (the first person charged in Utah with violating the Ag-Gag law) and filed a lawsuit in a bid to overturn the law.
The cash paid out by the state will cover expenses incurred by the groups – including the costs of attorneys and other fees.
The 2012 Utah Ag-Gag law was overruled in July.
Although state attorneys argued the law protected property rights and made agricultural workers safer, District Court Judge Robert Shelby said it was ‘unconstitutional’, as it violated free speech rights protected by the First Amendment.
Utah is not the only state to see the law struck down. In 2016, the same thing happened to the law in Idaho.
A coalition of public interest groups and journalists are currently fighting against the same law in Iowa.
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