Animal rights group threatens Utah fur farms in new guide

Published: Thursday, June 13 2013 12:30 p.m. MDT

An FBI agent walks by a trailer that had been painted with the words ALF freedom on it. The graffitti was discovered after a fire broke out on BYU property around 3:00 a.m. Thursday, July 8, 2004.

Dan Lund, Deseret News

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SALT LAKE CITY — Anonymous animal rights activists have published a “guide to destroying the fur industry,” which lists numerous Utah fur farms as targets.

The publication, titled “The Final Nail #4,” is associated with the Animal Liberation Front, a group known for extreme animal rights actions against fur farmers including vandalism, arson, harassment and raids during which thousands of furbearing animals are set free.

The FBI has branded the group a domestic terrorist organization.

The guide contains a state-by-state directory of fur farms across the nation, including a list of more than 60 Utah farms with addresses and owner contact information.

Hundreds of copies of the publication were posted online and mailed nationwide to animal rights group members this week, and each time an edition of “The Final Nail” is released, a “wave of fur farm raids” follows suit, the Animal Liberation Front claimed in a press release.

After "Final Nail #3" was published in 2008, about 6,000 animals were released from a Kaysville mink farm. The group claimed responsibility for the raid, saying three of its "soldiers" were responsible.

Christopher Falco, the CEO and general manager of the Fur Breeders Agriculture Cooperative, said Animal Liberation Front “terrorists” burned down one of his company's buildings in 1997, causing roughly $1 million in damages. However, since threats from the group have been a constant concern, he said the newest publication does not prompt additional worries.

“We’re always concerned about it, but this is nothing new,” Falco said. “We have adequate protection in place that if these guys enjoy time in jail, I guess they can enjoy time in jail.”

In addition to the list of addresses and contact information, the group's publication provides detailed descriptions and photographs of fur farm locations, a "most wanted" list, as well as a guide on “How to Raid a Fur Farm." It describes what equipment to bring, where to park, and how to avoid getting caught.

In response to the new publication, Falco said Utah fur farmers should remain diligent and maintain strong security habits.

The authors of the publication claim that more than 130,000 fur farm animals have been released since 1986.

Email: kmckellar@deseretnews.com

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