Victory! Shady Monkey Transporter Shuts Down

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4 min read

Victory! This shady animal transportation company with a serious aversion to following the law has been flushed down the drain and put out of business.

Quebedeaux’s Transport—the scofflaw transportation company whose truck carrying laboratory-bound monkeys crashed in Pennsylvania last year, spilling three terrified monkeys out into freezing weather—has notified the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) that it has sold off its trucks and is out of the animal transport business.

PETA’s evidence gave Quebedeaux’s no choice but to quit and run away.

We were hot on its trail following the Pennsylvania crash. The three monkeys escaped and were shot and killed, and a woman trying to help was exposed to saliva from one them. She later underwent antiviral treatment. We drew massive public attention to the incident, pointing out the very real dangers to monkeys and to humans posed by businesses like Quebedeaux’s.

PETA soon discovered that Jeffrey Quebedeaux, the head of the company, had been retrofitting an old human prison to quarantine hundreds of monkeys slated for use in experiments in Avoyelles Parish, Louisiana. This monkey prison would have held mostly long-tailed macaques, who have been driven to the brink of extinction by experimenters.

We went directly to the local school board, which owns the land, and pointed out the dangers posed to both monkeys and humans. It voted to boot Quebedeaux out of town and started eviction proceedings to terminate his lease and collect past-due rent.

PETA also filed multiple complaints with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) regarding the transport company. Its apparent violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act (AWA) that we exposed included improper handling of the monkeys in the Pennsylvania crash and improper veterinary inspections of monkeys trucked to laboratories.

Monkey who escaped crash is spotted among crates
A bystander took this photo of one of the escaped monkeys, who was later shot and killed.

The USDA canceled Quebedeaux’s Transport’s license to transport animals.

And the USDOT issued the company an out-of-service order, which prohibits it from conducting business, because it had refused to undergo a safety audit.

PETA discovered that Quebedeaux had apparently ignored the USDA and USDOT licensing requirements and hauled four elderly long-tailed macaques, a species now declared endangered, from a breeding operation in Florida to Arizona State University, a serious violation of the AWA.

PETA didn’t let that slide. We called on the USDA to investigate Quebedeaux’s Transport as well as the Florida breeding facility and Arizona State University for their roles in the unlawful transport of the elderly monkeys.

We also urged the USDOT to investigate not only the shipment to Arizona but also four other shipments that appeared to have taken place after the out-of-service order was given. These included a shipment of 180 Cambodian long-tailed macaques from Orient BioResource Center, one of Inotiv’s monkey farms implicated in the recent U.S. Department of Justice indictments following alleged monkey laundering and smuggling from Cambodia.

The USDOT took PETA’s complaint seriously and launched an investigation into Quebedeaux’s Transport. It concluded that the company had sold all its trucks and closed the business.

The state-required paperwork from these monkey dealers appears to have contained lies about the company that transported these animals, which is particularly worrisome as the monkeys onboard may have been part of illegal monkey smuggling to the U.S. We’ll continue to work to hold the companies involved accountable.

Monkeys trucked by transport companies are stuffed into tiny crates and crammed into trucks before being hauled across the country to laboratories, where they’ll be poisoned, drugged, maimed, and ultimately killed in useless experiments. The truck routes are often thousands of miles across the country, and during the journeys the monkeys have to sit in their own waste and hear the screams of dozens of other terrified monkeys.

Monkeys, along with their unknown health histories, land at U.S. airports and are driven across U.S. highways, often for thousands of miles, before reaching quarantine facilities. In 2021, more than 31,000 monkeys were imported into the U.S. for experimentation.

monkey in cage

PETA has exposed that the monkey importation and transport industry is violating the law, killing monkeys, and endangering the public.

We’re calling on people to e-mail the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and urge it to end the importation of monkeys destined for laboratories.

And please take a minute to tell the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to shut down the forest-to-lab monkey-abduction pipeline:

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