For Immediate Release:
April 19, 2023
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382
Miami – As the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida conducts its first public hearing on an alleged international conspiracy to smuggle endangered monkeys from Cambodia to feed the voracious U.S. experimentation industry, PETA supporters in monkey masks and metal ID collars will descend on the courthouse steps with signs bearing photos of the industry’s victims, proclaiming, “No gag order on monkey-smuggling evidence!”
PETA primate scientist Dr. Lisa Jones-Engel will attend and be available for comment afterward.
When: Friday, April 21, 9 a.m.
Where: In front of the C. Clyde Atkins U.S. Courthouse, 301 N. Miami Ave., Miami
The U.S. Department of Justice indictments in the case followed a five-year investigation by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) into the monkey-smuggling ring that allegedly abducted long-tailed macaques from their forest homes and falsely identified them as captive-born in violation of both the Lacey Act and the Endangered Species Act. This hearing, the first in the prosecution against Masphal Kry, a deputy director in the Cambodian Ministry of Agriculture, is to decide whether evidence in the case can be made public or will be suppressed, as Kry’s attorneys want.
“Terrified, endangered monkeys are being torn from their families and sent to their deaths in stark U.S. labs,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “Kry’s attorneys want to suppress all evidence, but this case is tied to publicly funded experiments on animals and full transparency is essential.”
Since 2017, tens of thousands of long-tailed macaques have been funneled from Cambodia to U.S. buyers, including the National Institutes of Health, U.S. military research facilities, and many public and private universities. This sordid trade has brought long-tailed macaques to the brink of extinction, and PETA—along with primatologists Jane Goodall, Birutė Galdikas, and Ian Redmond and 30 wildlife and animal protection organizations—has filed a formal petition with the FWS to have the species declared endangered.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information about PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.