IN THE NEWS: On AUG 22, 2018
Australia's largest live sheep exporter and the company at the heart of the live export scandal, Emanuel Exports, has lost its licence, the Department of Agriculture and Water has confirmed.
Until now the company's licence to export had been suspended "pending a full review of the company's response to a show cause notice".
The department began the investigation after video footage emerged showing almost 2,500 sheep either dead or dying of thirst and heat exhaustion in faeces-strewn pens aboard the livestock carrier Awassi Express in the Middle East last year.
"[The department] has taken action against this company in the best interests of the industry and for the protection of Australia's high standards of animal welfare and health," it said in a statement issued overnight.
"Cancellation of licence is a serious step and is not one taken lightly. The department is satisfied that this is the most appropriate response."
The department said the company had failed to meet the clear requirements under the legislation that governs the export of livestock.
"The department … has taken action against this company in the best interests of the industry and for the protection of Australia's high standards of Animal Welfare," the department said.
A spokesman for Emmanuel Exports said late on Tuesday the company was "evaluating its options" in light of the ruling.
In late May, the department sent a show-cause notice to Emanuel Exports, and it is understood the company responded with a 30-page statement.