By Jaclyn De Candio for Protect The Harvest
On November 30, 2023, the ringleader and co-founder of the animal rights extremist group Direct Action Everywhere (DxE), Wayne Hsiung, was sentenced to 90 days in jail and two years of probation by Sonoma County California Superior Court Judge Laura Passaglia.
The sentencing follows Hsiung’s arrest for trespassing and conspiracy charges followed by “protests” held outside two Petaluma poultry farms more than five years ago. During these so-called “protests,” Hsiung and fellow animal rights extremists illegally trespassed onto these farms and stole animals in the name of “open rescue,” claiming that they were in need of veterinary care.
Hsiung’s charges consist of one felony count and two criminal misdemeanors. As an attorney, Hsiung opted to represent himself in court, insisting that his actions were not criminal in nature as he had the end goal of “raising awareness” about the modern poultry industry.
However, in her sentencing, Passaglia disagreed, stating there is a clear line between activism and criminal activity, and Hsiung’s actions were the latter. In addition to the sentence, Hsiung was ordered to remain 50 yards away from the farms he committed crimes against – Sunrise Farms and Reichardt Duck Farm – as well as being barred from interacting with his co-conspirators. He is also forbidden from entering any other commercial animal feeding operation without explicit permission from the owner.
During the sentencing, three additional extremists who were involved with Hsiung during his crimes were arrested. These extremists include Zoe Rosenberg, Conrad de Jesus, and Rocky Chau, who, according to reports, were on their way to the Sonoma County Sheriff’s office to make another cruelty allegation at a farm they had infiltrated. They now face the same charges as Hsiung.
Rosenberg is a well-known extremist, TEDx speaker, and the founder of Happy Hen Sanctuary. She has a previous criminal record that began when she was just 16. According to a DxE spokesperson, Rosenberg is facing the most charges of the three, including six misdemeanors for trespassing and seven felonies related to conspiracy and burglary.
While this court win is encouraging for those of us pursuing A Free and Fed America™, we shouldn’t become complacent. Hsiung and his companions have repeatedly shown they care little for the law and consider their activities above the Constitution. We applaud judges who enforce the rule of law, as well as juries who take a stand against criminal activities. Protect The Harvest will continue monitoring animal rights extremists and keep a spotlight trained on their activities.