Judge halts enforcement of Iowa’s ag trespass law

A federal court judge has halted enforcement of Iowa’s latest ag trespass law and denied the state’s efforts to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the law.

The law, which was passed by the Iowa legislature earlier this year, created a trespass charge for anyone using deception to gain access to a farm with intent to cause physical or economic harm.

It was the Iowa legislature’s second attempt to protect farms from unwanted intruders. A federal judge struck down a previous law, saying it violated constitutional free-speech rights.

The latest lawsuit was brought by a coalition of animal rights, environmental  and public interest groups. They claim the law prevents would-be whistle blowers from exposing animal abuses on farms.

  • This law SHOULD NOT be enforced…’s not trespassing if you have permission to enter. Period. If it turns out you have intentions that would have been unacceptable to the grantor had they known, it’s still not trespassing. False representation, maybe. Sales people do that all the time, as do corporations. This goes hand in hand with the trend to criminalize protesters. In that case, private homeowners should be granted the same protections, they “might be hiding something”, but they are not, and their right to privacy continues to erode. If the general public has no right to privacy, then businesses/corporations shouldn’t either, using their own logic that “corporations are people”.

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