For Immediate Release:
November 16, 2022
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382
Washington – Please see the following statement from PETA primate scientist Dr. Lisa Jones-Engel regarding the U.S. Department of Justice indictment of multiple individuals allegedly involved in a monkey-laundering and -smuggling ring that supplied U.S. laboratories with long-tailed macaques captured in their forest homes and falsely identified as captive-born:
PETA applauds the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other authorities for today’s announcement that a multiyear investigation has revealed alleged rampant criminal activity, including the laundering of wild-caught macaques who were exported and then illegally sold to companies in the U.S. We hope those arrested will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and if convicted prevented from ever coming near a monkey again. During the last decade, at least 100,000 long-tailed macaques were taken from the forests and protected areas of Cambodia or confined to filthy, disease-ridden monkey farms to be sold for exportation to the U.S. and other countries for use in laboratory experiments. The exploitation of these monkeys has been so catastrophic that recently, the conservation status of long-tailed macaques was elevated to endangered. The alleged false labeling of these monkeys as “captive-bred” is a crime that appears to be enabled by greedy American animal experimenters, who refuse to admit that their studies are killing monkeys, failing to help humans, and decimating wild populations.
In October 2022, following the importation of 1,080 long-tailed macaques from Cambodia into the U.S. by Hainan and Maleth-AELF airlines, neither of which appeared to possess a valid USDA registration to transport monkeys, PETA requested that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service investigate whether these airlines and the companies they supply—Envigo and Orient BioResource Center—had violated the Lacey Act.