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Lancaster, PA — Last month, we brought you the story of Amish farmer Amos Miller, who operates Miller’s Organic Farm in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.
Miller has been targeted by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Reading the government’s own words, Miller’s crime was for being successful and having happy customers. Ultimately, the crime really was he was independent of the corporate system.
A ruling has since come down by federal judge Edward Smith stating Miller must pay $250,000 in fines and $14,436 in government expenses within 30 days or face arrest and further fines. He is also prohibited from slaughtering animals at his farm.
The order states: “In order to effect defendants’ future compliance, by making them aware of the seriousness of their violations and the consequences for future violations, defendants are ordered to pay to the United States, within 30 days of the date of entry of this Order — and pursuant to written instructions that the United States will provide to defendants — a fine of $250,000, or face further monetary and other penalties, possibly including imprisonment of Amos Miller.”
As reported last month, Miller was attempting to work with the government and USDA despite there being no victims of any crime. He asked for the fine to be reduced to $25,000 and for 60 days to pay the fine.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Miller, it currently having $58,877 in donations with a goal of $75,000.
The page states that the family farm has been in operation for a century serving a private membership clientele with a focus on producing “pure foods the way nature intended and we are proud to be entirely chemical, cruelty and GMO-free.”
“The farm is now under attack by the USDA about nonconforming practices, the practices which predate the USDA,” the page states. “They are suing the farm to comply with USDA laws, concerning the way the farm animals are processed and how our food is labeled. The farm and its members believe that we have the right of free assembly and the right to choose how our food is processed and consumed without the USDA dictating to the farm.”
The page adds: “Our Farmer, Amos Miller, needs your help to preserve traditional farming the way God intended. In order to defend the way the farm has produced its pure foods for more than 100 years, Amos has to hire civil rights attorneys to argue the farm’s case in court against the army of lawyers that the USDA are bringing to the courtroom.”
Keep in mind, there was no complaint from a single customer. In fact, Miller’s customers have heaped praise on his products.
The Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states: “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.”
Even if one thinks that a crime, even with no victim, has been committed by Miller, a question you should ponder: Is $250,000 in fines and threats of jail justice or cruel and unusual punishment?
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