Release No.: 137-19
WASHINGTON, Oct. 15, 2019 – As part of its commitment to ensuring fair and competitive markets for the livestock, meat and poultry industries, on Oct. 4, 2019, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a complaint against Darren Roberson d.b.a. Rock’n R Cattle Co. (Rock’n R Cattle) of Lindsay, Okla., for alleged violations of the Packers and Stockyards (P&S) Act.
An investigation by USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service revealed from September 2015 to March 2016, Rock’n R Cattle purchased a total of 236 head of livestock for a total purchase price of $202,765 without obtaining the necessary bond or bond equivalent.
The P&S Act requires that every market agency, packer and dealer must execute and maintain a bond applicable to the activity or activities in which the entity engages. Operating without an adequate bond or bond equivalent is a violation of the P&S Act.
Additionally, Rock’n R Cattle issued one check for livestock purchases totaling $202,931 without sufficient funds in its bank account to support the payment and failed to pay when due for livestock purchases totaling $332,880.
The P&S Act requires subject entities to issue the full payment for livestock by the close of the first business day following purchase and transfer of possession. Failure to timely pay for livestock purchases and issuing insufficient funds checks is an unfair trade practice and a violation of the P&S Act.
Rock’n R Cattle will have 20 calendar days following receipt of the complaint to respond directly to the USDA Administrative Law Judge or be found in violation and subject to penalty.
The P&S Act authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to assess civil penalties up to $11,000 per violation against any person after the notice and opportunity for hearing on the record. If the allegations are admitted, or proven in an oral hearing, Rock’n R Cattle may be ordered to cease and desist from violating the P&S Act and assessed a civil penalty.
The P&S Act is a fair trade practice and payment protection law that promotes fair and competitive marketing environments for the livestock, meat and poultry industries.
For further information about the Packers and Stockyards Act, contact Stuart Frank, Packers and Stockyards Division, at (515) 323-2586, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org .
USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender
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