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Australian slaughterhouses exposed for cruelty (13 so far)

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Laverton Knackery

Laverton Knackery

Location: Leakes Road, Truganina VIC
Owned by: Unknown
Status: Open and operating
Phone: (03) 9369 2703

In late 2012, the Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses used hidden cameras to film horrific scenes at the Laverton Knackery in Victoria. Just 20 minutes from Flemington Racecourse, Australia's most famous race track, unwanted horses were filmed being abused and killed.

One by one, horses are lined up and entered into a kill-box, where they are shot in the head. In one instance, a second horse enters the kill-box at the same time; a worker then repeatedly beats him on the head to force him back. The first horse is then shot, falling down and seeming to break her neck on the gate, right in front of the other horse.

The footage also showed another horse being shot in the holding yards, and then dragged half-dead more than 60 metres across the concrete ground, before being shot again and having his throat slit. He finally died 4 minutes after the first shot.

Investigators documented horses being beaten with pieces of poly pipe; animals being transported while injured; foals, small horses and mares kept in the same un-shaded yards as stallions; sick and injured horses left untreated; and in one case a dead horse being left in the holding yard while others stood around him.

Animals Australia filed formal complaints with PrimeSafe Victoria (responsible for knackeries) and the RSPCA. The Laverton knackery had previously supplied horse meat to the Werribee and Melbourne Zoos, however these zoos cancelled these arrangements after the footage emerged. Ultimately though, no charges were laid against the workers or the owners of Laverton Knackery.

The footage provides an insight into the dark side of the horse racing industry - a side hidden from the Australian public.

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