The owner of a former meat storage facility in Shubenacadie has been sentenced on a number of Meat Inspection Act violations, and faces fines totalling $12,500.
Environment Nova Scotia inspectors conducted three inspections in December 2017, resulting in 3,340 kg of rotting product being removed from Moxsom Meats Ltd.
Business owner Jeffrey Moxsom pleaded guilty to multiple violations in court on April 18 in Shubenacadie Provincial Court.
“The images speak for themselves,” said Crown prosecutor Brian Cox in a telephone interview Thursday. “Nothing at that facility was fit for human consumption; it was contaminated significantly with mould and who knows what else.”
For the seven violations of the Meat Inspection Act, Moxsom was ordered to pay fines totalling $5,000; his now-defunct business was given a further $7,500 penalty.
Moxsom also received a 12-month conditional sentence, including nine months of house arrest and another three months under curfew. Also included in sentencing were a number of firearms violations.
Moxsom pleaded guilty to:
1. Allowing tables, benches, blocks and meat containers to fall into poor condition.
2. Failing to keep his meat plant clean and in good repair.
3. Failing to prevent contact of a carcass with the floor or walls.
4. Failing to keep rails, racks and hooks clean and in good repair.
5. Failing to take every practicable precaution against vermin such as rats or flies.
6. Failing to handle and keep meat and meat products in a manner and place to prevent contamination.
7. Failing to prevent meat or meat products from coming into direct contact with the floors and walls.
“I think this is a case that shows why the regulatory regime in Nova Scotia exists and how a professional inspection regime can disclose violations like this,” said Cox. “Education and enforcement are important to ensure public health is maintained.”
Court documents also revealed Moxsom was in possession of several firearms, which were seized by RCMP officers. These included a .38-calibre revolver, a break-action sawed-off shotgun, a Russian-made bolt-action rifle with a bayonet, a Mossberg pump-action shotgun, a Mossberg 17 Hornady Magnum Rimfire calibre with a scope and another bolt-action rifle, also with a scope.
None of the guns were loaded, but officers found a large cache of ammunition.
Moxsom was already subject to a lifetime ban on possessing restricted or prohibited weapons and a 10-year ban on possessing any other firearm or ammunition, imposed in March 2008.
Moxsom pleaded guilty to the firearms violations and was ordered to provide a DNA sample. He was given a new 10-year prohibition, which also bans him from owning crossbows.