Draconian SHAC sentences

IssueFebruary 2009
News by Polina Aksamentova

Seven animal-rights activists of Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) were jailed on 21 January, with sentences ranging from four to 11 years in prison.

On 23 December, Gerrah Selby, Daniel Wadham, Gavin Medd-Hall and Heather Nicholson were found guilty of conspiracy to blackmail companies associated with Huntingdon Life Sciences (HLS), which kills five hundred animals daily conducting research for pharmaceutical companies. They were sentenced to four, five, eight and 11 years, respectively.

SHAC founders Gregg and Natasha Avery and Daniel Amos pleaded guilty to the charges before the trial in July and were sentenced with the other members to nine and four-year terms. The prosecution called the six-year global campaign to close HLS “menacing.”

SHAC members were accused of harassing companies and individuals connected to HLS until they agreed to stop working for it.

The methods listed were noisy protests outside business premises, abusive telephone calls, emails and letters, threats of assault and damage to property and false accusations of child abuse. The activists were also said to have been linked to the sending of hoax bombs and used tampons claimed to be soaked in HIV-infected blood.

More next issue.