Busted! Owner of Evanger’s arrested on felony charges

The president of Evanger’s was arrested on charges of subornation of perjury, bribery and communicating with a witness in an ongoing trial where he is charged with Class 1 felony theft and money laundering.

Joel Sher, owner of Evanger’s Dog & Cat Food Co., was booked into county jail and charged with attempting to bribe a witness in a case where Sher has been accused of stealing over $2 million worth of gas and power lines to his company.

Mr. Sher allegedly offered $5,000 to a witness in exchange for changing testimony in the case stemming from 2010, when Sher ordered employees to use jack hammers to dig through concrete and asphalt and divert gas lines, even supplying them with a tool to help roll back gas meters, as part of an elaborate system in which gas flow was diverted to the pet food plant before it ever reached the meter.

In 2010, Cook County prosecutors charged Sher along with his wife, Holly Sher, whose family owns Evanger’s, of also illegally diverting electricity by tapping into main power lines on poles outside their plant. The couple, were also accused of ordering an employee, wearing only a pair of rubber gloves, to disconnect an illegal bypass attached to a high-voltage line shortly before inspectors arrived.

Mr. Sher and his wife Holly Sher were both charged with felony theft and money laundering in the scheme, which allegedly had gone on for several years. Witnesses say the smell of gas fumes wasn’t unusual at Evanger’s.

Mr. Sher now faces three new criminal charges, including subornation of perjury, bribery and communicating with a witness, in addition to the original charge of Class 1 felony theft and money laundering. A Class 1 felony designation is typically the most serious felony in the states where this designation is used.


Chicago Tribune; Man accused of trying to bribe witness; 2013 Feb 9. [cited 2013 Feb 24] Available from: http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-02-09/news/chi-man-accused-of-trying-to-bribe-witness-20130209_1_bribe-witness-power-lines-gas-flow

Cook County Sheriff D.O.C Inmate Locator: Individual Inmate Report (page can no longer be found)
The Village of Wheeling v. Evanger’s Dog and Cat Food Company (pdf)

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Mollie Morrissette

Mollie Morrissette, the author of Poisoned Pets, is an animal food safety expert and consumer advisor. Help support her work by making a donation today.

Comments (24) Write a comment

  1. Having known Joel and Holly Sher for many years when I resided in Lincolnwood, I can say that I’m not the least bit surprised by the horrific charges brought against them. They NEVER even owned a dog (or any other pet) that I knew of and clearly demonstrated money and more money was their only motivation. When I read quotes of Mrs Sher like “our common dedication and love for dogs…” I want to vomit. It’s the most disingenuous statement I’ve ever heard!! Is it possible that these people are still in business??? I read something about they relocated in Markham now? Knowingly causing harm and even death to any animal is unforgivable in my book.


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  4. What is the name of the company that actually manufactures their pet foods? Very few, if any, brands actually make their own foods.


    • Evangers is manufactured by themselves, They have their own manufacturing plant. Please read my other articles about Evangers. Search Evangers in the search box. I hope this helps.


  5. This is a Jewish owned company. If they are 100 Talmudic, they do not follow any rules made by gentiles………….ever. Thus, they never will accept any punishment for going against gentile laws.


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  9. What I would really like to know is where did the poison come from has anybody bothered to track down where the poisoned meat was actually purchased.


    • No one knows yet. It will not be revealed until I have received any further information regarding the investigation…Or the FDA publishes something on their website.


  10. They are buying either horses or pets put down with Phenobarbital and using it enough for their dog food to cause deaths. Everything they do pints to no ethics, no integrity.


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  13. I’ve fed my 110 lb. dog the Evanger’s Hunk of Beef many times before switching to their Chicken dog food, which he prefers, and have not had any health issues with it. He prefers this brand to others. The only substitute for it would be for me to feed him freshly cooked chicken breast, which I do at times. I’ll continue giving him this product as long as I don’t see any issues with it. I also mix in some kibble to give it a crunch.


    • Wow, they found phenobarbital in the food. Who cares what flavor! Why would you risk it? Sounds a bit naïve to me and ignorant.


      • We need more hero’s like Mollie! People who prey on innocent animals (and our love for them) for profit are sub-human. I lived near the Sher’s for many years and am not surprised by their actions at all. Everything was always about $$ from what I witnessed. They never even had a dog- or any pet!!


  14. This food made my 2 German Shepherds very sick last night. They both lost function in their hind legs, very scary, an obvious neurological food poisoning. They ate late, about 10pm and had about 3 cans each, by 2am they were falling down and couldn’t walk. This food is not cheap and the factory conditions that I’ve read about are absolutely disgusting. They have already been fined $168K, but they are still producing this poisonous crap. Don’t feed this to your dogs! Update as of 6/21/2015: Dogs were diagnosed having Botulism which is serious paralytic disease in dogs, related to ingestion of raw meat and dead animals. Site to look at http://www.consumeraffairs.com/pets/evangers.html.



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