LYNCHBURG, Va. (WRIC) — A federal judge in Lynchburg issued an order on Monday that would deny Envigo, the controversial dog-breeding facility based in Cumberland County, from selling more than 2,000 beagles into 2023.
According to a statement released by PETA, documents filed last week by the U.S. Department of Justice revealed that Envigo was trying to ‘prefill’ orders of 2,200 dogs — mostly from overseas customers — into July 2023.
On Monday, June 27, Judge Norman K. Moon with the Lynchburg Division of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia issued an order rejecting the Cumberland County dog breeder’s motion for the court’s consent to proceed with selling the dogs well into next year.
“[T]he Court’s injunction…only allows sale of animals pursuant to preexisting contracts with dates of delivery within 30 days of the preliminary injunction order,” Moon’s order read.
Envigo had previously claimed on June 13 that it was seeking to sell approximately 500 dogs to research labs in the next 30 days, according to PETA’s release. A bipartisan group of Virginia lawmakers had been working to prevent this from happening.
“Today’s ruling properly thwarted Envigo’s shady attempts to ‘prolong operations’ and sell as many dogs as it could despite already admitting that it couldn’t comply with the pitifully minimal requirements of the federal Animal Welfare Act,” PETA Senior Vice President of Cruelty Investigations Daphna Nachminovitch said in a statement. “It’s time for Envigo to accept the DOJ’s plan to adopt every single surviving beagle out and shut down this chronically cruel dog prison, as it told the court it would.”
PETA’s release also stated that Envigo and the DOJ now have until 5 p.m. on Wednesday, June 29, to submit a joint transfer plan for the approximately 3,200 beagles that remain at the facility.
Envigo announced earlier this month that they are closing after an extensive investigation by WFXR’s sister station, WRIC, and an undercover operation by PETA, which exposed the mistreatment of hundreds of beagles at the facility.