COURT CALENDAR

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, May 1993:

Animal Trafficking
Worldwide Primates propri-
etor Matthew Block, 31, of Miami,
drew 13 months in federal prison on April
17 for his part in arranging for six infant
orangutans to be smuggled from Indonesia
to the Soviet Union––the 1990 Bangkok
Six case. Hoping to win a plea bargain,
Block testified against three accomplices
and helped set up the January 26 arrest of
a Mexican zoo director for allegedly trying
to smuggle a gorilla. However, assistant
U.S. attorney Guy Lewis told U.S. district
judge James Kehoe that Block had never
fully cooperated with either investigation,
had lied about his degree of involvement
in the orangutan deal, and was still in
touch with smuggling associates. Block
now faces USDA action for allegedly
feeding primates at his facility spoiled
food, failing to provide water, and keep-
ing them in vermin-infested cages.

Sudanese authorities seized
eight tons of ivory on April 7, worth an
estimated $1 million. The ivory will prob-
ably be burned.
Misconduct
Special prosecutor William
Walker announced April 18 that he had
no grounds on which to charge either for-
mer New Matamoras, Ohio, police chief
Michael Brightwell or Humane Society of
the Ohio Valley agent Linda Moore with
cruelty in connection with the February 23
public shooting of 20 dogs whose owner
had died. Brightwell, who shot the dogs
with Moore’s okay, was fired for the
action by the New Matamoras council.
More than 1,000 residents of
Midland, Michigan, are demanding
action against Department of Natural
Resources officer John Geminder, who
shot a tame deer in front of two dozen visi-
tors at the West Midland Family Center on
February 28, allegedly because the deer
was kept there without a permit.
Pennsylvania Agency of
Animal Welfare investigator Leon
Johnson, 44, has been charged with tak-
ing a bribe of $5,000 in November 1992
for losing paperwork concerning the death
of cows on a farm in Wayne County.
Crimes Against Humans

The Cleveland, Ohio, coroner
has changed the listed cause of the Sept. 2,
1992 death of Angela Kaplan, 28, from
“violence” to “murder,” upon the advice
of dog behaviorist Karen Arnoff. Kaplan,
the mother of two young daughters, bled to
death after suffering more than 180 bites
from a pit bull terrier belonging to her
unidentified common law husband, who
told police she refused medical treatment.
He has not been charged.
Donna Marie Walko, 35, o f
Monroeville, Pennsyvlania, was convict-
ed March 26 of conspiracy and solicitation
to commit murder during June 1990. On
June 12, 1992, while the case was pend-
ing, Walko was convicted of cruelty to a
horse whom Animal Care and Welfare
SPCA chief humane agent Ernest Blotzer
found “emaciated, drawn, and dehydrat-
ed,” with “Mane and portion of back
singed and burnt.”
Released on $10,000 bail March
26 after an arrest for assaulting a woman,
biting a dog, and attacking two hotel secu-
rity guards, Donald Fitzgerald, 42, of
Cochecton, New York, was arrested
again hours later, for shooting a cat dead
and wounding a 15-year-old bicyclist.
Bowhunter Christopher High-
tower, 43, was convicted April 21 of
killing a family of three in September
1991 near Providence, Rhode Island.
Hightower said his crossbow was found in
the victims’ car because he’d bought it to
kill raccoons and groundhogs for them.
Activism
U.S. Surgical attorney Hugh
Keefe on March 23 persuaded district
judge Warren Eglinton to accept a recom-
mendation by magistrate Thomas P.
Smith that Friends of Animals’ two-year-
old defamation suit against U.S. Surgical
should be dismissed, “because of a sys-
tematic pattern of discovery abuse,” pri-
marily pertaining to a U.S. Surgical
demand that FoA should turn over a list
of all donors of $1,000 or more––which
was in fact delivered to the court with a
request that it be kept confidential.
Neither Smith or Eglinton noted that
Keefe for his part subjected FoA presi-
dent Priscilla Feral and vice president
Sarah Seymour to 43 and 32 sessions of
interrogation, respectively, totaling 300
hours, during which time Smith permit-
ted no objections and told Keefe to seek
sanctions against them if they refused to
answer any question, no matter how per-
sonal. FoA filed the case in January
1991, trying to air the full circumstances
of the 1988 Fran Trutt case. Trutt, who
was arrested just after placing a bomb in
the U.S. Surgical parking lot, accepted a
plea bargain in March 1990, but not
before media investigation and pretrial
hearings revealed that she had been given
the money to buy the bomb and driven to
the site by paid agents of a private securi-
ty firm retained by U.S. Surgical,
Perceptions International. One agent had
previously approached many other people
in the animal rights, environmental, and
radical political communities, suggesting
violent and illegal actions against U.S.
Surgical because of the firm’s laboratory
use of dogs. FoA has appealed.
Louisiana attorney general
Richard P. Ieyoub ruled April 12 on
behalf of Legislation in Support of
Animals that, “It is the opinion of this
office that the Animal Care and Use
Committee (at public college and univer-
sity campuses within the state) is subject
to the Open Meeting Law.” This clears
the way for LISA representatives to
attend animal care and use committee
meetings, or to sue to attend if barred.
Stefan Presser, legal director
for the American Civil Liberties
Foundation of Pennsylvania, warned
Pennsylvania state police commissioner
Glenn Walp on April 16 that he misin-
structed officers two weeks earlier when
he told them that they could charge anti-
pigeon shoot protesters who videotaped
their actions with a third-degree felony
under the state Wiretapping and
Electronic Surveillance Act. “I write to
appraise you,” Presser cautioned, “that
your statement runs counter both to the
language of the statute and the interpreta-
tion given it by the Pennsylvania
Supreme Court. An individual does not
commit a crime by recording with a video
camera the oral communication of
Pennsylvania State Troopers acting in
their official capacities at public events.”
Jailed since Nov. 3 for con-
tempt of court after refusing to testify to a
federal grand jury probing the Animal
Liberation Front, Oregon activist
Jonathan Paul petitioned for release in
late March, claiming no amount of coer-
cion can make him testify. He could
remain jailed until December.
Crimes Against Wildlife
Opponents of deer farming pre-
dicted it would become a cover for poach-
i n g , and the prediction seems to have come
true in Quebec, where 25 wardens raided
eight different locations during the first week-
end in April to seize five hypodermic guns,
vials of tranquilizers and antidote, and hun-
dreds of syringes and drug darts, while arrest-
ing five game farm owners for illegal posses-
sion of 15 live bucks. According to Eastern
Townships regional chief warden Real
Carboneau, the game farmers would tell
neighbors a domesticated deer had escaped,
drug a wild deer, and take it home as purport-
edly recaptured domestic stock. The deer
were then killed in canned hunts; customers
paid $500 to $1,500, depending on the size of
the buck. According to F e d e r a t i o n
Quebecoise de la Faune officials Yves Olivier
and Yves Castonguay, the racket was bigger
than that. They accused Agriculture Canada
staff of dispensing deer tags to as many as 75
game ranchers without adequate controls,
enabling some of the ranchers to resell the
tags to poachers. Further, they said, high
ranking Agriculture Canada brass used their
influence to delay the investigation by the
Quebec Ministry of Recreation, Hunting,
and Fishing, to protect “some very important
people,” whose names have not yet been dis-
closed. The FQF represents 340 Quebec fish
and game clubs, with 250,000 members.
Six students in the Conservation
Law Enforcement Program at Unity
College in Unity, Maine, have been charged
with jacklighting a cow on March 16. Several
of the suspects are also under investigation for
allegedly killing wild turkeys and songbirds,
whose remains were found in their dormitory
rooms. John Foster, 24, of Manchester,
New Hampshire, was further charged with
fraudulently obtaining a hunting license. Five
of the six quit the program when the charges
were laid, while the sixth, apparently
involved only after the fact, was placed on
disciplinary probation. The case broke when
Waldo County Sheriff’s Deputy Michael
Boyer arrested Foster, Peter Leo, 21, of
Worcester, Massachusetts, and Dieter
Ganshaw, 20, of Hyannis, Mass., for night
bowhunting. It was the second unusual jack-
lighting case in Maine within two months. On
Valentine’s Day, Randy Swafford, 20, of
Woodland, shot Stacey Dyer, 17, of
Caribou, as she sat in a parked car with her
boyfriend. Swafford, who had illegally bait-
ed the area, said he thought he’d shot a coyote.
Hunting guide Brad Lee
Langvardt, 41, of Soldotna, Alaska, drew
18 months in jail April 13 and forfeited a
Super Cub airplane worth $30,000, in a deal
that allowed him to plead guilty to only six of
the 30 poaching charges he originally faced.
Langvardt, assistant guide Brent Allen
Shuman of Wasilla, and clients Tim Gress of
Ennis, Montana, and Richard Damele of
Concord, Calif., allegedly used the plane in
illegally killing grizzly bears, caribou,
wolves, and Dall sheep. In earlier plea-bar-
gains, Shuman accepted a sentence of 300
hours of community service plus a two-year
loss of hunting privileges; Gress took a fine
of $10,000; and Damele was fined $5,000.
Seventeen alleged poachers w e r e
nabbed April 17 in a series of raids near
Potosi and Mineral Point, Missouri. Five
hundred pounds of game meat were seized.
Six of the eight alleged poachers
arrested in Operation Clanbake, the biggest
poaching bust ever in Ohio, have now copped
plea bargains. The stiffest sentence went to
Doug Andrews of Toledo, who faced 41
charges, will spend 28 days in jail with 11
months suspended; was fined $8,200,
ordered to pay $3,800 restitution, and lost his
hunting and fishing privileges for life, but can
petition to hunt and fish again in 15 years.
A federal grand jury has indicted
Cesario Quinteros Campos, 32, and Ricardo
Contreras Tirado, 23, for shooting repeatedly
at a highly endangered California condor on
July 19, 1992. The condor escaped injury.
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