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Part 5 “Protection of activities of certain organisations” of the SOCPA 2005 be repealed

Comment 16th July 2010

I believe Part 5 "Protection of activities of certain organisations" of the  SOCPA 2005 be repealed, as this section expressly prohibits protecting animals that can not protect or speak for themselves. This would give unhindered freedom to people who abuse animals in the course of their business to do so with out any consideration as to the welfare of rights of the animal.

In 2005 the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 was introduced by the labour Govt. This Law was trumpeted by politicians as an attempt to crackdown on crimes such as gangsterism, racketeering, people trafficking and sexual slavery, what it ended up as however was a crackdown on our right to organise and protest.

For a piece of legislation apparently designed to tackle some of the most heinous activities in our society it bizarrely contains a whole section specifically outlawing animal rights campaigning.

Sean Kirtley, an activist from Stop Sequani Labs in England became the first high profile victim of this Act receiving four and a half years (and a five year ASBO on release) for taking part in what even the police admitted was a peacefull protest against the Lab in 2007. You might remember we conducted a campaign along with other groups and individuals across the UK to have Sean released and last year after serving sixteen months the Court of Appeal overturned his conviction. A precedent was set however and they can legally now come for any of us.

Why does this matter?

To give you a taster of how bad this law is one section makes provision for a five year sentence for writing letters or emails to firms, staff or researchers involved in animal experiments. You can read the whole section here:

The right to stand up and act against exploitation and abuse should be fundamental in any civilised, modern society. Politicians and their friends and paymasters in the corporations and companies who make billions from torturing and killing animals are determined to slap us down and keep us quiet.

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