Kill buyer facing larceny charges tomorrow for selling thoroughbred to slaughter house

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Posted By: 

ANDY PERRY

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Horse Racing News
  • Kill buyer facing larceny charges tomorrow for selling thoroughbred to slaughter house

Kill buyer facing larceny charges tomorrow for selling thoroughbred to slaughter house

It is hushed up but commonly known fact in the horse racing industry that most of the horses that have finished their careers, have become disabled or in short, not able to participate in horse racing events for any reason, are more often than not put to death.

One such sad incident has taken place recently with Matthew D. Clarke, who had sold his seven year old thoroughbred horse named Munition, only to find that the horse had been sent off to a slaughter house. It has now been almost 40 years that Clarke has been training horses. He is currently the farm manager at the New England Stallion Station.

 "I was very upset about losing this horse,” said Mr. Clarke. “It was a real tragedy. Five days after he was taken from my farm, he was transferred to ‘Spud' (Joseph F.) No one, who is very well-known in the equine community in the Northeast. He gets horses together and ships them to an auction in New Holland, Pa. — one of the premier auctions for kill buyers. We turned up a day too late and found out he was sold.”

Before the year 2007, USA was host to slaughter houses for horses as well. But during that year, the remaining three foreign owned slaughter houses were shut down. However, slaughter houses are operational in countries such as Mexico and Canada. Upon their death, the meat of the horses is used for human consumption in these countries.

Usually, the owners do not directly condemn their horses to such death houses, rather, there is an intermediary called the kill buyer, present between the two. Kill buyers trick horse owners such as Clarke into selling them the horses with promise of a suitable living facility or they but the horses at auctions. Once the kill buyers obtain the ownership of these horses, they are shipped off to countries housing the slaughter houses.

As the story goes, Munition was sold by Clarke to Mara Feld, a toxicology research scientist. Feld, though a horse lover was unable to afford the maintenance cost of the thoroughbred and within a few weeks decided to sell him by advertising in the Craigslist. Feld was contacted by a horse dealer by the name of Mr. Noone and was assured by him that Munition would enter the companionship of loving family, where Feld could also visit. However, once Feld sold the horse, Noone disappeared and could not be contacted even after repeated attempts. It was then that Feld realized that something tragic may have happened to Munition and she began looking after it.

Feld has pressed charges against Mr. Noone , who will be facing a criminal charge of larceny in Gardener District Court tomorrow.