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'Ag-Gag' Bill Advances in Indiana

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A Region lawmaker says a measure approved by the state senate Tuesday jeopardizes free speech and freedom of the press. Senate Bill 373 -- some call it “Ag Gag” – makes it illegal to take photos or video of agricultural or industrial operations without permission from the owner. Portage State Senator Karen Tallian says the measure "puts a criminal penalty on the truth" and would have a major impact on First Amendment rights by punishing people who report, whether or not they're members of the media:  The initiative establishes a defense if a person records evidence of illegal activity if the information is passed along to law enforcement within 48 hours. However, it's a class b misdemeanor to pass along evidence to the media.   Violators could face six-months in jail and a fine of up to a-thousand dollars.   Critics of Senate Bill 373 say undercover videos expose wrongdoing, inhumane treatment and food safety dangers. The Humane Society of the United States also opposes the bill. Supporters say it's meant to protect businesses from being embarrassed.
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