A former investor in Pigeon King International testified Wednesday that she and other investors were “more than elated” to hear of a police investigation into the company’s owner.

“It was causing tremendous amounts of stress,” Darlene Thayer said at the fraud trial for Arlan Galbraith.

After the company went bankrupt in 2008 Thayer formed a support group for a number of American farmers who had lost money – in many cases significant amounts of money – as a result.

The U.S. Coalition against PKI and Arlan Galbraith represents 50 former Pigeon King investors from several states.

“In order to service justice, I needed to come here today to testify,” she told CTV News outside the Kitchener courthouse where the case is being heard.

Thayer’s family spent an initial $19,000 after deciding pigeon breeding would be a good use for an empty barn on their farm property.

Before the birds arrived, she testified, she began hearing rumours that Pigeon King wasn’t the investment opportunity it pretended to be.

“Deep down, I knew then that it was a scam and it was all going to fall apart,” she said.

The company went bankrupt before the Thayers’ birds were ready to sell.

In the end, they gave the pigeons away, losing a total investment of $30,000.

Galbraith, who is representing himself in the trial, cross-examined Thayer on Wednesday, asking if she had “ever heard of a bankruptcy that was a happy event.”

“The only happy outcome is when justice is served at the end,” Thayer replied.

In addition to fraud, Galbraith is charged with four Bankruptcy Act offences.

He has pleaded not guilty on all counts.