Police raids last week – a follow up

Update on all those police raids last week »

So far in Scouseland none of the people detained and questioned were charged. Also the dogs that got loose still haven’t been found.

Elsewhere in the UK »

Via the Guardian:

Animal rights activists involved in bid to shut lab among 30 arrested in raids

· Huntingdon Life campaign leader among those held
· Extremist crime unit led swoop by 700 police

Sandra Laville, crime correspondent
Wednesday May 2, 2007
The Guardian

Leading animal rights activists involved in a bitter campaign to close down a scientific research laboratory were arrested yesterday after a two-year intelligence-led operation involving police forces in the UK and Europe.

Greg Avery, who runs Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (Shac), was among 30 alleged extremists seized from their homes at dawn in a police operation that was overseen by the National Extremist Crime Unit, according to police sources. Thirty-two addresses were raided, including one in Belgium and two in Amsterdam.

Also in the same report, and given a few paragraphs is the Freshfields raid:

….One of the addresses raided was the Freshfields Animal Rescue Centre on Merseyside. Dave Callender, who runs the centre, has convictions for firebombing and formerly chaired the Animal Liberation Front (Alf) on Merseyside.

Mr Callender, 47, was jailed for 10 years in March 1996 for conspiring to commit arson. A jury at Birmingham crown court heard he had enough material to make more than 100 incendiary devices. The prosecution alleged that he was planning a “campaign directed at a number of targets which included cattle farms, slaughterhouses, meat traders, egg production farms and also societies connected with hunting or other field sports”.

Mr Callender was also a leader of demonstrations against fox hunting, hare coursing and the Grand National.

But yesterday Mr Callender, who was not arrested, said he had given up his activist past.

He condemned the police for their heavy-handed approach. “They turned up at 5am and seized three members of staff from their beds,” he said. “They took another two who arrived at work at 6.20am. We have had no access to the property since and we have been unable to feed all our animals or clean them out.” He added: “None of the staff has been placed under arrest. We have nothing to hide here. I am an older, wiser man now.”

» Full article

Another item (found by Lindsay) from Portsmouth Today News »

Animal activist: ‘I was terrified as police broke in’

An animal rights protester today told of the terrifying moment police smashed down her front door and arrested her.

Nicci Tapping was asleep in bed with her two dogs when police officers in riot gear stormed her house.

She said officers ran upstairs and towered over her bed, brandishing truncheons.

The 25-year-old, of Alver Road, Gosport, was arrested on suspicion of blackmail on Tuesday in the largest ever swoop on suspected animal rights extremists.

After hours of questioning at Fareham police station, she was eventually released on bail….

… She said police searched in her fish tank and gerbil cage, and confiscated her computer, phone, cash and credit cards.

She added that they also took leaflets promoting a vegan festival in Southampton.

Miss Tapping said: ‘They’ve taken everything.

‘I think it’s just really over the top and shocking the way they can just smash into a property and do this.’

» Full article

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