The Crown Case against raw milk farmer Michael Schmidt — part 2

Collecting evidence

Collecting evidence

From Court documents for the upcoming trial on January 26, 2009:

Crown Summary, continued:

A search warrant was obtained, which authorized a search of Mr. Schmidt’s premises, consisting of the farm, farm store, the blue bus, and office area of this house. The warrant was executed on November 21st, 2006, and as a result several additional pieces of evidence were collected including, a cautioned statement from Mr. Schmidt admitting to his involvement in producing and distributing unpasteurized milk and milk products; Numerous exhibits from the barn area showing his operation as an unlicenced milk plant; milk and milk products on the bus about to be delivered, documents and exhibits supporting allegations of sale and distribution of milk and milk products, including price lists, and detailed sales records showing the number of customers served each day on the bus as well as at the farm and the income generated from those days, cow share members lists including addresses, photos showing that the milk is centrally collected — and not collected specifically for any one cow share member. Further, documents and e-mails were also collected from the computers of Mr. Schmidt confirming that he was producing and distributing unpasteurized milk and milk products for people, in several locations throughout Ontario, and on a regular basis. It is clear that Mr. Schmidt routinely took and filled orders in order to supply his products to his customers.

Samples of the unpasteurized items (obtained by the officer on August 22, 2006, October 17, 20 and 27, 2006 as well as November 7, 2006) were sent to the University of Guelph laboratory services located in Guelph Ontario for testing. Several tests were conducted on the items in order to test for food safety concerns, as well as tests to show that the milk and milk products were unpasteurized. These tests confirmed that all the items originated from unpasteurized milk. Furthermore, random samples taht were collected during the execution of the search warrant on November 21, 2006, were also tested and showed the absence of pasteurization.

In Mr. Schmidt’s cautioned statement he discussed the following;

  • He does not posess a licence to operate a plant or distribute millk
  • He supplies his cow share members with unpasteurized milk and milk products and personally transports to them in the blue bus
  • He also supplies at the farm and also delivers to his members off site in the Toronto area
  • The cow share membership scheme and how he collects money
  • That he is aware that it’s illegal to sell or distribute unpasteurized milk products, but has chosen to continue to supply the cow share members with these products

Since the execution of the search warrant, Mr. Schmidt has stated publicly (through the new media) that he has supplied unpasteurized milk and milk products, thereby confirming the results of this investigation. he states that he has never denied his actions.

As a result of the laboratory results, purchases made by the officer, numerous admissions by Mr. Schmidt, the evidence collected during the warrant, as well as at other times during the investigation, the charges before the court were laid.

The foregoing is followed by Appendix C (to be continued)

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