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About ALF > History

ALF 1979 - 1993

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, between 1979 and 1993 there were over 313 incidents of break-ins, vandalism, arson and thefts committed in the name of animal rights in the U.S. Attacks on medical research continue today, resulting in millions of dollars worth of damages and delays in the development of new treatments and cures. Following are some of the most destructive incidents in recent years:

University of Minnesota
    Vandals broke into research facilities at the University of Minnesota, stole 116 research animals, ransacked a dozen research laboratories, and destroyed computers, microscopes and one-of-a-kind medical equipment. In addition to the millions of dollars worth of physical damage, the vandals also destroyed or delayed important research projects. Research that had developed mice to mimic traits found in Alzheimer's patients was delayed; possibly as long as 2 years, human cancer cells taken from brain tumor patients, critical to developing a vaccine against cancer, were destroyed, scientific information that was being compiled to be sent to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to begin clinical trials of a human cancer vaccine was lost, and animals used in research for Parkinson's disease, cerebral palsy, Huntington's disease and various forms of cancer were stolen. April 5, 1999

Cornell University
    The Animal Liberation Front broke into the laboratory of a Cornell University professor and released dozens of woodchucks into the wild. Woodchucks are ideal laboratory animals in which to study liver cancer and hepatitis. The university breeds them for use in trials of anti-viral drugs and improved vaccines. The ALF communique reported that in addition to releasing the animals, the raiders engaged in economic sabotage by removing data cards on cages, destroying log books and allowing vials of serum to spoil at room temperature. July 5,1998.

Cavel West
    The Animal Liberation Front set fire to Cavel West, a horse rendering plant in Redmond, Oregon causing $1 million in damages. Cavel West provided horse tissue to the Pacific Coast Tissue Bank in Los Angeles which treats skull bone birth defects in children. Medical procedures at Pacific Coast have been postponed indefinitely. July 21, 1997.

Emory University
    More than 50 animal activists were arrested when they tried to force their way into Yerkes Regional Primate Center during a protest. Police officers were forced to spray mace and tear gas to gain control of the situation after the activists rammed a police barricade through the back windshield of a police car. Activists were charged with criminal interference with government property, trespassing and obstruction of police. April 26, 1997.

Carolina Biological Supply Company
    According to the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) Worldwide Diary of Actions, a deliberately set fire in a chemical storage building at the CBSC's Burlington campus forced the evacuation of 1000 workers and residents for fear of toxic chemicals being released. CBSC is one of the USA's largest suppliers of animals for dissection in schools, and for research in labs. May 10, 1994.

Utah State University
    The ALF claimed responsibility for the arson at USU's farm where coyotes are housed. Researchers were studying the behavior of the coyotes to determine ways to protect them in the wild. The fire was started with an incendiary device. Estimated damages $100,000. October 24, 1992.

Michigan State University
    The ALF set a MSU researcher's office on fire and vandalized a laboratory where mink are kept. Damage estimates to the office ran as high as $100,000, not including the 32 years of medical research data that were lost. Damage to the research facility was estimated at $20,000 to $25,000. February 28, 1992.

Oregon State University
    An anonymous telephone call claimed the ALF set the fire that destroyed a single-story building at the Malecky Mink Ranch in Yamhill, Oregon. Malecky Ranch's owner claimed his business was destroyed. The Ranch works with the Oregon State's research on mink breeding and nutrition. December 22, 1991.

Washington State University
    The ALF claimed responsibility for the break-in and damage caused at WSU's Bustad Hall. Overall, one mink, ten mice and seven coyotes were set free from their cages. Substantial damage was caused to documents and interior facility fixtures. August 13, 1991.

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