Green Hill judge ignores independent vets
The Italian judge who found three managers of the Green Hill dog breeding facility guilty of animal cruelty has explained his judgement. His report states that in reaching the guilty verdicts earlier this year, he dismissed 67 assessments from independent vets and inspectors from the local regulatory authority Azienda Sanitaria Locale, and chose instead to rely on the testimony of one vet who is a member of the animal rights group that brought the prosecution.
Wendy Jarrett, CEO of Understanding Animal Research, said: "According to Italian legislation on animal research, the Green Hill managers were not breaking the law, yet they have been convicted and sentenced to prison terms. It is clear that the judge ignored the reports of the official inspectors in favour of the biased testimony of anti-research protesters. The rule of law should not be suspended because a minority are opposed to the use of animals in research."
Marshall BioResources, the parent company of Green Hill, has confirmed that it will appeal the convictions. Scott Marshall, CEO of Marshall BioResources said: "This judgment is wrong because it is not based on the legislation concerning the protection of animals used for scientific purposes. We will appeal this injustice and seek to have a fair hearing based on laws governing the use of animals for scientific purposes.”
In a joint statement from the European Animal Research Association (EARA) and Understanding Animal Research (UAR) on the recent news about the Court verdict against Green Hill, we said:
“The Italian prosecutions seem to have come out of nowhere since no animal welfare issues were identified in over 70 inspections made by the Italian authorities between 2008 and 2012, and a previous attempt to prosecute the company was thrown out by the Italian courts. We hope that the sentences will be overturned on appeal."
More from EARA here.