Criminal gang runs chicken slaughterhouse, sells birds under gov't radar

The criminal group has been making a profit of tens of millions of shekels per year from the heist.

 Chicken inside a chicken barn in Yashresh Israel on November 21 2020.  (photo credit:  YOSSI ALONI/FLASH90)
Chicken inside a chicken barn in Yashresh Israel on November 21 2020.
(photo credit: YOSSI ALONI/FLASH90)

A crime ring has been running a chicken slaughterhouse in the north for the past few years, selling chicken to suppliers and shops throughout the country — without government supervision — Israel Police announced on Monday morning when it arrested six people in connection with the incident. 

Police suspect that the unregistered chicken sales — which were not reported to any tax authority — brought the group an income of tens of millions of shekels per year to the organization

In addition to the six suspects arrested, police apprehended six more and confiscated nine private vehicles, 11 trucks and industrial vehicles and half-a-million shekels in cash.

What charges are they being accused of? 

The charges being attributed to the suspects are accepting an item fraudulently, as well as forgery, under aggravated circumstances, accepting and giving bribes, money laundering and selling denatured food.

 A vantransporting eggs outside a chicken barn in Yashresh Israel on November 21 2020.  (credit: YOSSI ALONI/FLASH90) A vantransporting eggs outside a chicken barn in Yashresh Israel on November 21 2020. (credit: YOSSI ALONI/FLASH90)

When has this happened before?

Back in 2013, a similar case of disturbing animal cruelty occured in Haifa’s bayside suburbs. A Soglowek Food Industries truck carrying birds designated for slaughter was involved in an accident on a back road. As a result, the truck flipped over and the cages spilled out onto the road. The birds dispersed everywhere, some of them sustaining injuries

"I've never personally seen an area after an air bomb or a massacre scene, but this was as close as I ever got," Liron, a vegan activist, said after arriving at the scene at the time. 

"The cages were overturned on the street, terrified turkeys were lying on the bodies of others that were already dead. You could see the fear in their eyes." 

"The cages were overturned on the street, terrified turkeys were lying on the bodies of others that were already dead. You could see the fear in their eyes."

Liron, animal rights activist

According to Liron, once police officers arrived at the scene of the crash, they didn't understand why he and another activist wanted to take the birds to a veterinarian. "They said the birds were designated for slaughter." 

By Liron's account, what followed was a tense showdown between the Soglowek truck driver, one of his contractors, and the other activist with Liron, who was yelled at and cursed by the other two. 

They added that once the two realized that the activists were not planning on leaving, they started to kick the birds and return them violently back to their cages.