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Charges dropped against activist who exposed Iowa hog deaths

GRUNDY CENTER, Iowa (AP) — Prosecutors have dropped trespassing charges against an activist who secretly recorded Iowa’s largest pork producer using heat to kill hundreds of pigs last year as the pandemic devastated the industry. 

Matt Johnson, an activist with the group Direct Action Everywhere, had been scheduled to stand trial Monday in Grundy County on two counts of trespassing at Iowa Select Farms properties. 

County prosecutors dismissed the charges Thursday at the request of Iowa Select, whose personnel had been subpoenaed to testify. 

A company spokeswoman says it “cannot be distracted by individuals who choose to break the law and grandstand.” 

Johnson is an Iowa native who now lives in Berkeley, California. He says the company is “desperate to conceal their abhorrent and criminal conduct.”

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