PETA Statement: Notorious Aquarium Co-Owner to Return to Prison

For Immediate Release:
February 24, 2016

David Perle 202-483-7382

PETA Foundation Deputy Director of Captive Animal Law Enforcement Brittany Peet released the following statement regarding Ammon Covino—the former co-owner of the Austin Aquarium, San Antonio Aquarium, Idaho Aquarium, and recently shuttered Portland Aquarium—who was found on Monday to be in violation of the conditions of his parole after his 2013 felony conviction for conspiracy to purchase and sell wildlife illegally:

Not even a felony conviction and a yearlong prison sentence for conspiracy to commit illegal wildlife trafficking stopped Ammon Covino from going back to the cruel animal-exhibitor business. While his parole violation is costing him $50,000 and more of his freedom, the marine animals he and his family have put on display are doomed to die in their prisons. PETA urges anyone who cares about animals’ well-being to refuse to patronize any business that exhibits and exploits animals for profit.

PETA’s motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment,” and more information about the Portland Aquarium is available here.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind