SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Animal-welfare activists are trying to overturn a Utah law that prohibits undercover filming at farm operations.
The Animal Legal Defense Fund and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals filed a lawsuit Monday in federal court in Salt Lake City.
The groups have the backing of attorneys at the University of Denver's Sturm College of Law and the Utah Legal Clinic.
A leading constitutional scholar, Erwin Chemerinksy, says the law restricts free speech and singles out animal advocates for punishment.
Activists say filming livestock operations continues a tradition of journalistic muckraking that has led to landmark food safety laws.
The Utah law makes it a misdemeanor to trespass on private property to record images or sounds of a livestock operation. A sponsor says it protects private property rights.