Animal rights activists claim responsibility for setting fire to 14 tractors and several trailers at Harris Ranch in San Joaquin Valley, Calif. according to a statement released Monday.
An anonymous statement released by spokeswoman Nicoal R. Sheen of the Animal Liberation Press Office said the attack was aimed at “the horrors of factory farming.” Sheen said the office distributes communiqués from people involved in illegal actions but the office itself is not involved.
Detectives initially considered animal rights activists could be responsible for the damage. Fresno County sheriff’s spokesman Chris Curtice told the Fresno Bee detectives are looking into the claim.
In the statement, animal rights activists said containers of accelerant were placed beneath a row of 14 trucks with four digital timers used to light four of the containers and kerosene-soaked rope carrying the fire to the other 10.
The fire at the Harris Ranch truck lot was started Sunday morning. It took deputies and Cal Fire personnel about 45 minutes to put out the fire.
The statement added the activists were “extremely pleased to see all 14 trucks 'were a total loss.’” It added, "We're not delusional enough to believe that this action will shut down the Harris feeding company, let alone have any effect on factory farming as a whole. But we maintain that this type of action still has worth, if not solely for the participant's peace of mind, then to show that despite guards, a constant worker presence and razor wire fence, the enemy is still vulnerable.
Harris Farms is California’s largest cattle feeder, beef processor and beef marketer.
The cost of the damage has not been released.