US animal rights activists target medical labs


Some animal rights activists in the US are becoming increasingly radical, according to a report by Associated Press. Last month, in a typical incident, extremists stole a credit card from the wife of a drug company executive, purchased US$20,000 in travellers' cheques and donated them to four charities. An announcement posted on the web warned of dire retribution if the money were returned.

The FBI is investigating several incidents over the past year committed by the Animal Liberation Front against Manhattan-based Forest Laboratories and its executives. Forest has links to the British company Huntingdon Life Sciences, which does experiments on animals. Seven people will go to trial next month in New Jersey for operating a web site which promoted terrorising Huntingdon and other businesses.

"There is no question that the fringes of the animal welfare and environmental rights movements have become increasingly radicalised," said Mark Potok, director of the Southern Poverty Law Center's Intelligence Project, which monitors hate groups. "These sectors see themselves in a war against the entire government and industrial democracy itself."



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