SACRAMENTO, Calif. – A bill pending in the California state legislature would require that anyone collecting evidence of animal abuse submit it to law enforcement within 24 to 48 hours, according to the Associated Press.
The bill, AB 343, would require anyone "who willfully photographs, records, or videotapes animal cruelty to submit the photographs or video to both local law enforcement and the owner of the animal within 48 hours of taking the footage." Rep. Jim Patterson, whose district includes Harris Ranch, introduced the legislation recently. The California Cattlemen's Association sponsored the bill.
Animal rights and labor groups have criticized the bill as attempt to criminalize undercover operations aimed at exposing animal abuses and unsafe food production practices. Industry representatives said the goal of the bill is to stop abuses and get evidence to regulators quickly.
ASPCA, the Teamsters, The Humane Society of the United States and other groups have formally opposed the bill, according to the Associated Press.