Update #4: Here is a copy of the Search Warrant and Affidavit used in today’s Rawesome raid.
Update #3: LAist is reporting:
Sharon Ann Palmer – owner of Healthy Family Farms, LLC, in Santa Paula – and Eugenie Victoria Bloch – a Healthy Family Farms employee – were both arrested today on criminal conspiracy charges stemming from the alleged illegal production and sale of unpasteurized goat milk, goat cheese and other products.
James Cecil Stewart, who runs Venice’s Rawesome, was also arrested today on similar charges.
The complaint totals thirteen counts, four of which are conspiracy.
Prosecutors say Healthy Family Farms has operated without license or permit for milk production since 2007. Palmer and Healthy Family Farms are charged in nine of the thirteen counts. Bloch faces three conspiracy counts.
Rawesome, a health market in Venice, failed to obtain a business permit or license since its opening more than six years ago. Stewart faces thirteen counts.
Update #2: From the LA Weekly: The official word from the DA’s office is that Stewart, Palmer & Bloch were arrested on criminal conspiracy charges stemming from the alleged illegal production and sale of unpasteurized goat milk, goat cheese, yogurt and kefir.
The arrests are the result of a year-long sting in which an undercover agent received goat milk, stored in a cooler in the back of Healthy Family Farms van, in the parking lot of a grocery store. While it’s legal to manufacture and sell unpasteurized dairy products in California, licenses and permits are required. Rawesome may have also violated regulations by selling raw dairy products to non-members.
Update #1: NaturalNews.com has an update on the Rawesome Food raid:
(A massive public protest on the front steps of the LA courthouse is being planned for the morning of August 4th, where James Stewart has been promised a hearing before a judge.)
A multi-agency SWAT-style armed raid was conducted this morning by helmet-wearing, gun-carrying enforcement agents from the LA County Sheriff’s Office, the FDA, the Dept. of Agriculture and the CDC (Centers for Disease Control).
Rawesome Foods, a private buying club offering wholesome, natural raw milk and raw cheese products (among other wholesome foods) is founded by James Stewart, a pioneer in bringing wholesome raw foods directly to consumers through a buying club. James was followed from his private residence by law enforcement, and when he entered his store, the raid was launched.
Law enforcement demanded that all customers (members) of the store vacate the premises, then they demanded to know how much cash James had at the store. When James explained the amount of cash he had at the store — which is used to purchase product for selling there — agents demanded to know why he had such an amount of cash and where it came from.
James was handcuffed, was never read his rights and was stuffed into an unmarked car. While agents said they would leave behind a warrant, no one has yet had any opportunity to even see if such a warrant exists or if it is a complete warrant.
Law enforcement then proceeded to destroy the inventory of the story by pouring the milk down the drain and / or confiscating raw cheese and fresh produce for destruction. Video now posted at NaturalNews.TV.
Note to NaturalNews readers: We believe this was an ILLEGAL raid being conducted mob-style by government thugs who respect no law and no rights. This is an all-out war by the government against people who try to promote healthy raw and living foods.
James is now being held at the Pacific division police department at Centinela and Culver in Los Angeles. He is being held at $123,000 bail with no possibility of using bail bonds. Law enforcement has demanded that if he comes up with the money to cover bail, he must disclose to them all the sources of that money. (This is an illegal demand!)
Massive public protests are needed to teach these criminal law enforcement agencies that they cannot illegally arrest and persecute individuals merely for buying and selling raw milk and cheese. We are organizing a public protest day in cooperation with James. Please watch NaturalNews for an announcement of that. Story is developing…
Right now, James needs help raising money with his legal defense needs. Our non-profit Consumer Wellness Center is currently serving as the collection point for donations. You may donate right now at www.ConsumerWellness.org (100% of the donations go directly to James’ legal defense needs, the Consumer Wellness Center keeps nothing).
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