The animal rights group PETA has filed new complaints with the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office and the California Veterinary Medical Board against HBO’s canceled horse racing drama "Luck," reports the New York Daily News.
The complaints against "Luck," which was canceled in March after the deaths of three horses, include allegations that animals on the show were underfed and drugged from the time of the pilot episode through the second season, the piece says.
The horses were allegedly underfed to save money, with one horse 300 pounds underweight, the story says. Some sick horses allegedly disappeared without explanation, while others were allegedly tranquilized to keep them docile, the piece says.
HBO said in a statement, "The safety and welfare of the horses was always of paramount concern. While we maintained the highest safety standards possible, working closely with American Humane Association to review and improve protocols on an ongoing basis, it was impossible to guarantee no further accidents would occur."
PETA reportedly obtained memos and emails from the American Humane Association that appear to provide evidence of violations of state anti-cruelty laws as well as Humane Association guidelines, the story says.
PETA Senior Vice President Lisa Lange said: “These documents appear to reveal what ‘Luck’ executive producers David Milch and Michael Mann have repeatedly denied: that horses were mistreated and endangered on a daily basis. … The authorities can take action now to send a message that cruelty to animals for the sake of entertainment or for any reason will not be tolerated.”
As previously reported, the cancellation of the critically acclaimed show cost HBO $35 million.