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BOISE -- Dairy farmers enraged by spying animal-rights activists got a boost when senators agreed to intensify punishments for those who film their operations without permission.

Idaho's Senate voted 23-10 Friday to put people caught surreptitiously recording agricultural operations in jail and fine them $5,000.

The bill now goes to the House.

This measure stems from a 2012 incident at an Idaho dairy where activists captured images of workers caning, beating and stomping on cows.

Idaho's $2.5 billion milk industry argues the video was used by agri-terrorists not to curb abuse, but to harm the dairy -- even after its owner fired workers and pursued animal-cruelty prosecution.

Foes including Republican Sen. Curt McKenzie, branded the measure too extreme, while Democrats compared activists to muckraker Upton Sinclair.

Utah has a similar ag-gag law.

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