BLM claims selling wild horses to kill buyer Tom Davis was selling them to a “good home”

by Debbie Coffey, V.P. & Dir. of Wild Horse Affairs, Wild Horse Freedom Federation All Rights Reserved. Copyright 2017

On the Bureau of Land Management’s new website, on the Program Data page for the Wild Horse & Burro Program (under the Wild Horse and Burro Sales to Private Care tab), the BLM claims “It has been and remains the policy of the BLM, despite the unrestricted sales authority of the Burns Amendment, NOT to sell or send any wild horses or burros to slaughterhouses or to “kill buyers.”

The BLM claims “Wild Horses and Burros Sold to Good Homes” but then includes a total of 402 wild horses and burros sold in Fiscal Year 2012. (In this 402 total, 320 were horses and 82 were burros.)

BLM sale logs obtained by us in Freedom of Information Act requests indicate that in Fiscal Year 2012, the BLM sold 239 wild horses (almost 80% of the 320 horses that were sold) to kill buyer Tom Davis of La Jara, CO.  Many, if not all, of these wild horses went to slaughter in Mexico.

Does this look like a “good home” to you?

BLM states it has a policy not to sell wild horses and burros to kill buyers, but:

  1. On 1/11/12, Lester T. Duke (BLM Burns, Oregon) sent an email to BLM’s Bea Wade, regarding 50 sale authority horses, noting that a “large portion”of the mares were “possibly pregnant.” Lester asked if they should ship to long term holding or hold them at the corrals for sale. Bea responded that she forwarded the email to Sally Spencer. After a couple of more emails regarding this, Sally finally sent email on 2/23/12 that Tom Davis would purchase the horses, starting with the load of mares from Burns, Oregon. (About a week later, BLM sold Tom Davis 32 horses from the Burns, Oregon corrals.   19 of these horses were mares)
  2. On 4/19/12, Deanna Masterson, Public Affairs specialist for the BLM Colorado state office, sent an “Early Alert” email to “WO BLM/DOI Officials” (Jeff Krause, Leigh Espy, Helen Hankins, Steven Hall, Tom Gorey and Sally Spencer) that “The Colorado Department of Agriculture notified the BLM Colorado State Office of a Colorado Open Records request from David Phillips, a freelance journalist, for brand inspection and transfer paperwork for horses the BLM sold to Tom Davis of La Jara, Colorado. Phillips indicated he suspected Davis of selling these horses for slaughter to Mexico.”
  3. On 4/24/12, the BLM, alerted that Tom Davis was suspected of selling horses for slaughter, still sells 106 wild horses to Tom Davis.
  4. On 5/17/12, Sally Spencer sent out an email, marked “High” importance, to 21 people (Joe Stratton, Roger Oyler, Amy Dumas, Fran Ackley, Karen Malloy, Christopher Robbins, Jared Bybee, Robert Mitchell, Alan Shepherd, Rob Sharp, Robert Hopper, Gus Warr, June Wendlandt, Joan Guilfoyle, Mary D’Aversa, Dean Bolstadt, Jeff Krause, Tom Gorey, Debbie Collins, Lili Thomas, Bea Wade) and BLM_WO_260 WHB Communications, telling them a reporter was calling about Tom Davis. Spencer asked Joe Stratton to send out a message to all facility managers and the state leads to send a message out to all WHB Specialists that if they were asked “specifics” about a purchaser, they shouldn’t respond for privacy issues…”

If BLM personnel were so convinced that they sold the wild horses and burros to a “good home,” why all of the urgency and secrecy?

If the BLM truly believes these horses were sold to a “good home,” why isn’t Tom Davis’ photo featured on the BLM’s Wild Horse & Burro Program page on the BLM’s new website, instead of the photo of the young blonde girl? After all, the BLM sold Tom Davis 1,794 wild horses and burros from 2008-2012.

If the BLM thinks they’re fooling us, they’re only fooling themselves.

All documents referenced above can be seen HERE.

Despite Slaughter of Wild Horses, No Prosecution of BLM or Rancher Involved

H. Sterling Burnett as published on The Heartlander

“…he became the largest buyer of wild horses in the United States…”

BLM Captives; Freedom Lost ~ by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

BLM Captives; Freedom Lost ~ by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Just two weeks after Ken Salazar was selected by President Barack Obama to become the 50th Secretary of the Interior in 2009, the Bureau of Land Managment (BLM), an agency within the Department of Interior (DOI) sold and began shipping horses to rancher, and reported Salazar associate, Tom Davis, who in turn, in violation of the law resold them to slaughter houses in Mexico for horse meat.

A report released by the DOI’s Office of the Inspector General in late October, concluded the BLM did not follow the law in selling 1,794 horses to rancher Tom Davis. The sales were conducted through the agency’s Wild Horse and Burro Program – the program established to protect, manage and control the wild horse population.

The BLM sold horses to Davis between 2008 and 2012 for roughly $10 a horse. The agency lost money on the transactions since they spent tens of thousands of dollars on transport. By contrast, according to Davis he resold “loads” of 35 horses for as much as $4,000, making $2,500-$3,000 profit on each sale, despite signing a contract with the BLM agreeing not to send the horses to slaughter. With the volume of horses Davis purchases he became the largest buyer of wild horses in the United States.

The Inspector General’s report states, “During our investigation, Davis admitted that most of the horses that he purchased through WH&B ultimately went to slaughter. We determined that BLM did not follow current law while managing WH&B. According to the report, the BLM did not follow its own policy of limiting horse sales and ensuring horses sold were not slaughtered.

The slaughter of horses for meat violated a congressional ban on the practice as well as BLM policy.

Despite the Davis’s reported ties to Secretary Salazar, the IG’s office “determined that this matter did not warrant further investigation.” The IG did refer Davis’ conduct to both the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado as well as the State of Colorado Conejos County District Attorney’s Office. Neither office chose to bring either civil or criminal charges.

According to the report, WH&B marketing specialist who approved the sales to Davis received “exceptional or superior” reviews, complete with bonuses between 2008 and 2012…(continued)


Prologue by R.T. Fitch ~ president/co-founder of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

“Sorry, not to sound jaded, but the above information is nothing new and we volunteers at Wild Horse Freedom Federation are making a sincere effort in not slipping into “We Told You So” mode.

Back in 2013 our own Vice President and Director of Wild Horse Affairs, Debbie Coffey, uncovered rock solid evidence, in the way of paperwork, receipts, etc.. of the BLM selling wild horses to known kill buyers (Click HERE to read report) and the entire story was just swept under the carpet by the Feds.

Terry and I, along with many other equine advocates, made a point to be present at the very next BLM Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board meeting to speak on and to present said evidence to the board and the BLM, see video below, and again…nada.

What does it take to get the members of Congress to wake up and smell the BLM’s BS, collusion and criminal activity?  The time for a Congressional Investigation is long past due.

If you are not emailing and writing your Congressional representative on this topic, please begin to do so.

If you are writing and politely prodding, continue with your efforts.

We are not just cheerleaders, here at SFTHH or at WHFF, but instead we are the gatherers of information and the voice of those who cannot speak for themselves.

If ever there was a time to ‘KEEP THE FAITH” and continue to plow forward, this is it…don’t give up; you are not alone and every little effort matters .

Feel free to utilize the reports and documentation supplied on this site, we are a storehouse of information on this topic.

Keep after it, my friends, we need to make this happen.” ~ R.T.

For More Stories and Information on the BLM selling wild horses and burros to slaughter click (HERE)

Dept. of Justice refuses to take any action against Spur Livestock, BLM contractors who sold wild horses to kill buyer

By Debbie Coffey, V.P. & Dir. Of Wild Horse Affairs, Wild Horse Freedom Federation   Copyright 2015                   All Rights Reserved.

In this case, there was NO justice.  Wild Horse Freedom Federation did an investigation and found that a BLM long term holding contractor, Spur Livestock, sold wild horses to well known kill buyer Joe Simon.  R.T. Fitch, President of Wild Horse Freedom Federation, publicly presented an official government document with proof of this to the National Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board at their meeting.  Joan Guilfoyle, Division Chief of the BLM’s Wild Horse & Burro Program, was present.

However, the Department of Justice (DoJ) only issued a letter of declination.  A declination decision is generally viewed to mean that the DoJ , in the exercise of its prosecutorial discretion, declines to prosecute or bring an enforcement action.  

So, the issue of a current BLM contractor selling wild horses to a kill buyer, most likely for slaughter, was just swept under the rug.

joe-simon-invoice

Also, the 36 horses with the U freezemark were BLM sale authority horses. So, Spur Livestock sold 70 wild horses to well known kill buyer Joe Simon.

 

On the BLM FROM THE PUBLIC page for the National Wild Horse & Burro Program, it states this:

Question:  What is the BLM’s response to allegations regarding wild horse sales to a South Dakota long-term pasture contractor, known as Spur Livestock, in 2008? (Updated September 2014)

Answer: The BLM cares deeply about the well-being of wild horses and burros, both on and off the range, and takes seriously all accusations of the slaughter of wild horses or burros.  These accusations were thoroughly investigated and the case was presented ot the U. S. Department of Justice who issued a letter of declination. The case has been closed.”
But, this contradicts the BLM’s answer to the question about the 1700 wild horses sold to Tom Davis (see below), in which the BLM states “Anybody that is found to have violated the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act should be held accountable.”
In fact, Spur Livestock, owned by Jim Reeves and Lyle Anderson, continues to be under contract with the BLM.   It seems that the only thing the BLM cares deeply about is covering up the actions of its corrupt Wild Horse & Burro Program.
In furthering proof of BLM’s lack of transparency, the BLM didn’t post the actual declination letter so that the public could read the details.  The BLM Wild Horse & Burro Program should provide the public with information on all cases that it has brought to the attention of the DoJ, noting the reasons not to investigate or pursue prosecution, along with the rationale for those decisions.
As many of you know, the Department of Justice represents and defends the Bureau of Land Management in courts when wild horse advocacy groups and advocates file lawsuits against the BLM for it’s actions.
And, we’re all still sitting on the edge of our seats waiting for the answer to this question:
Question:  What is the BLM’s reaction to allegations regarding horse sales to Tom Davis of Colorado, as reported by Pro Publica?
Answer: The BLM condemns any sale of wild horses for slaughter.  We care deeply about the well-being of wild horses, both on and off the range, and it has been (and remains) the policy of the BLM not to sell or send wild horses or burros to slaughter.  We take seriously all accusations of the slaughter of wild horses or burros.  The Office of the Inspector General at the Department of the Interior has initiated an investigation into the situation and will work in conjunction with the State of Colorado throughout its investigation.  We look forward to the results of that inquiry.  Anybody that is found to have violated the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act should be held accountable.”
Anyone who violates the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act should absolutely be held accountable.  But they aren’t, and the BLM continues to spin public opinion with propaganda.

MORE Managing For Extinction?

 Observation by Grandma Gregg

What the ‘ell strategy is BLM using now?  Their internet adoption in the past has been for ADOPTION of wild horses and burros with a minimum bid of $125 and a written promise that the adopter would not sell the wild horse or burro to slaughter for at least a year – but now it appears that they are auctioning off our wild horses online for $25!

We know that in the past, the BLM has sold older sale authority horses and burros for as little as $10 each – with free delivery if you bought a trailer load – and we also know that many of these have gone to disappeared into the BLM’s never seen again pipeline – but now they are auctioning them off online for as little as $25 to prospective kill-buyers?

Below are two examples of older mares captured last summer from Sulphur Utah that BLM just auctioned offto someone in Oregon for $25 with free delivery to misc. sites – including some VERY questionable locations that have been known to have kill-buyers lurking.

Does anyone actually believe that these beautiful older mares are going to find happy, healthy and safe “forever homes”???

Or will it be the same kind of “home” that Tom Davis gave the 1,700 that BLM sold to him and conveniently “disappeared”?


Recent Sales Figures
Fiscal Year Mustangs Burros Total
2014 17 58 75
2013 22 43 65
2012 320 71 391
2011 855 16 871
2010 528 15 543
2009 772 19 791

The BLM’s sale authority figures have dropped WAY WAY down since the article came out in Sept of 2012 about BLM selling hundreds and hundreds of our wild horses to Tom Davis who could not account for the horses and burros whereabouts or well-being. (see chart)

Did that “discovery” actually slow the sales to questionable buyers way down?

OR

Did that “discovery” just channel the BLM to get rid of them with a different plan?
Such as … selling from LTH by the truck load and not including those in the “sales” chart?

OR

Are they experimenting with selling our older horses on the internet for a mere pittance?

OR

Selling them from Palomino Valley (and Fallon etc.) with no brands? (I have seen them at P/V with no brand or tag#)

Not to mention selling them directly from the range when nobody is looking?

Current Time is Dec 6, 2014 10:39:57 PM Central Time
Bidding is now over.

Category: Delta, UT
PREVIOUS HORSE NEXT HORSE

 

 Mare1 Sex: Mare Age: 16 Years   Height (in hands): 14Necktag #: 5350   Date Captured: 08/01/14Color: Dun   Captured: Sulphur (UT)Notes:
#5350 – 16 yr old dun mare, captured August 1, 2014 in the Sulphur HMA, UT (Freezemark:98745350 Signalment:HF1AAAABM).Her foal is #5358, an 7 mo old gelding, that will be weaned and adopted separately.For more information on the Sulphur HMA: http://goo.gl/7qH4On (must copy & paste link into browser).This horse is located at the Delta Wild Horse Corrals, Delta, Utah. For more information please contact Heath Weber at hweber@blm.gov or call 435-864-4068.Pick up options (by appt): Delta, UT; Elm Creek, NE; Pauls Valley, OK; Piney Woods, MS.Other pick up options: Brandon, FL (Jan 30); DeRidder, LA (Feb 20).Adoption confirmation for this animal must be finalized no later than Noon Nov 20th.

We will be offering mare #5350 up for adoption at a reduced rate due to her age through the Internet Adoption on Nov 4-18.

Number of Bids: 1
Winning bid: $25.00
High Bidder: OR7783
Category: Delta, UT
PREVIOUS HORSE NEXT HORSE
 Mare2 Sex: Mare Age: 12 Years   Height (in hands): 14.1Necktag #: 5345   Date Captured: 08/01/14Color: Dun   Captured: Sulphur (UT)Notes:
#5345 – 12 yr old dun mare, captured August 1, 2014 in the Sulphur HMA, UT (Freezemark:02745345 Signalment:HF1AAAAAM).Her foal is #5356, an 8 mo old gelding, that will be weaned and adopted separately.For more information on the Sulphur HMA: http://goo.gl/7qH4On (must copy & paste link into browser).This horse is located at the Delta Wild Horse Corrals, Delta, Utah. For more information please contact Heath Weber at hweber@blm.gov or call 435-864-4068.Pick up options (by appt): Delta, UT; Elm Creek, NE; Pauls Valley, OK; Piney Woods, MS.Other pick up options: Brandon, FL (Jan 30); DeRidder, LA (Feb 20).Adoption confirmation for this animal must be finalized no later than Noon Nov 20th.

If gelding #5345 is not adopted during the November 4-14, 2014 Internet Adoption, she will be available for adoption starting Dec 1st on a first come, first serve basis $125.00 with pick-up ONLY at the Delta Wild Horse Corrals in Delta, Utah.

We will be offering mare #5345 up for adoption at a reduced rate due to her age through the Internet Adoption on Nov 4-18.

Number of Bids: 1
Winning bid: $25.00
High Bidder: OR7783
 Sale Program
Sale ProgramBLM Wild Horse and Burro Sale Information
View on www.blm.gov Preview by Yahoo

Mare1I don’t trust BLM any further than I can throw them.And yet these beautiful wild mares are in BLM’s “protection”! Mare2

DA won’t prosecute Tom Davis

DA Won’t Prosecute Wild Horse Investor

Valley Courier  http://www.alamosanews.com/v2_news_articles.php?heading=0&page=74

Posted: Tuesday, Jun 18th, 2013 BY: RUDY HERNDON
Courier Staff writer

ALAMOSA — Prosecutors won’t file charges against a La Jara man who allegedly admitted he violated the law when he shipped hundreds of wild horses beyond Colorado’s borders.
ProPublica reported last September that federal land managers sold Tom Davis at least 1,700 wild horses and burros since 2009. Yet after it sorted through state brand documents, the publication could not account for the whereabouts of almost 1,000 horses he purchased.
Davis allegedly told ProPublica that he shipped some of the federally protected animals out of state without brand inspections — a misdemeanor crime under state law.
Wild horse advocates subsequently accused him of sending the animals off to slaughterhouses, but Davis denied those allegations.
The Conejos County Sheriff’s Office went on to investigate records of Davis’ purchases from the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM), as well as his brand inspection activity. But the agency, which received help from state brand inspectors and the U.S. Interior Department’s Office of Inspector General, limited its review to the period of inquiry allowed under Colorado’s statute of limitations.
It found no evidence that Davis shipped uninspected animals out of state during that time, District Attorney David Mahonee said in a June 17 press release.
As a result, his office will not file any charges related to the matter, he said.

Colorado Sheriff Opens Wild Horse Slaughter Investigation

Source:  By Dave Philipps as published in The Gazette.com

Wild horse advocates believe they illegally went to slaughter

dp_tom_davis_630x420_121110After months of false starts, state authorities have opened a formal criminal investigation into Tom Davis, a southern Colorado wild horse buyer who admitted to breaking state laws while shipping hundreds of federally protected wild horses to an unknown fate out of state.

Last week, the Conejos County Sheriff’s Office opened the investigation at the request of state brand commissioner Chris Whitney, who said Davis, of La Jara, admitted to the commissioner that he broke brand laws.

A ProPublica report published in The Gazette in September detailed how Davis, a proponent of horse slaughter, purchased truckloads of protected wild horses from the Bureau of Land Management. Davis said he then shipped the horses to what he called ‘good homes ‘ all over the country. None of the horses has been accounted for. Wild horse advocates believe they illegally went to slaughter. Davis denies this.

Colorado law requires a state brand inspection when livestock is sold or shipped more than 75 miles. Brand records show Davis received more than 1,700 horses from the BLM, but shipped only 765. None of the horses is in his possession, meaning almost 1,000 were shipped or sold without an inspection.

Davis admitted as much to ProPublica in 2012, saying he did not want brand inspectors to know where the horses were going. When the reporter suggested that was illegal, Davis replied, ‘Since when is anything in this country done legal? ‘

He could not be reached for comment last week.

Each violation of the brand law is misdemeanor punishable by up to 18 months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

After the ProPublica report, state agencies dithered, unsure how to enforce the law. The brand commissioner thought it was the job of the district attorney in Alamosa. The district attorney said it was not. Nothing happened with the case until a Gazette inquiry in early April…(CONTINUED)

Click (HERE) to read the story in it’s entirety

Colorado DA Opens Up Wild Horse Slaughter Probe

Salazar Crony Suspected of Shipping BLM Wild Horses to Slaughter Plants

Salazar’s Buddy Sinks Deeper into Slaughtered Wild Horse Mess

Colorado District Attorney David Mahonee said said in an interview for the Pueblo Chieftain on Thursday that he had opened an investigation into whether Tom Davis, who buys large quantities of wild horses from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), had illegally shipped the animals across the state line.

Mahonee, who had just returned from vacation, declined to discuss the details of the case against Tom Davis with reporter Matt Hildner, adding that he had yet to receive all of the information from the state Division of Brand Inspection.

State Brand Commissioner Chris Whitney said his office is asking local prosecutors to charge Davis for failing to comply with a state law that requires a brand inspection before shipping livestock out of state.

Davis had admitted in previous press interviews that he had purchased over 1,700 wild horses from the BLM and could not produce evidence of where they went or were currently located.

Of added concerns are that Davis is a neighbor to Ken Salazar, secretary of the Department of Interior, and reported to be a family friend. (Salazar oversees the BLM wild horse & burro program and recently threatened personal violence against a reporter on the Davis case.)

Whitney said he interviewed Davis Nov. 6 and confirmed the violation.

Penalties could range from misdemeanor fines to felony jail time.