BARABOO, Wis. (AP) _ A Wisconsin dairy farmer championed by raw-milk advocates has been fined $1,000 for violating a holding order placed on products at his farm.
Vernon Hershberger was sentenced Thursday in Sauk County Circuit Court. Last month a jury acquitted Hershberger on three charges of producing, processing and selling milk without proper state licenses.
But he was found guilty of one count of violating a holding order on products on his Loganville farm after a 2010 raid.
Hershberger was facing up to a year in jail and $10,000 in fines. Prosecutors asked for a $3,000 fine and 12 months of probation for violating the holding order.
Hershberger received no probation. Hershberger's supporters contend he was targeted because he sold raw milk through a private buying club.
Sentencing for a Sauk County farmer, caught up in the raw milk debate, will be held June 13. Vernon Hershberger was on trial last month on charges of producing, processing and selling milk without proper state licenses. A jury acquitted Hershberger on three charges, but he was convicted on one count of violating a holding order.
State prosecutors last Friday also asked the judge to send Hershberger to jail after he told a reporter that he continued sell milk, in violation of his bond. Herberger's attorney called the motion vindictive.
A hearing on that motion and sentencing on the holding order conviction will both take place next Thursday.
A Loganville dairy farmer is found not guilty on 3 charges of selling raw milk without the proper licenses. The jury deliberating in the case against Vernon Hershberger at the Sauk County Courthouse until Saturday morning, and also finding him guilty of violating a food holding order, which was a demand from state officials to suspend his operations.
Hershberger took the stand in his own defense Friday. The week-long case bringing in supporters on both sides of the raw milk issue. Those who advocate for the right to sell raw milk say it's a matter of personal choice, while others cite health concerns and say unpasteurized milk will lead to food borne illness.
A sentencing date on the one guilty verdict isn't yet scheduled for Hershberger.