Animal Defenders International


Animal Defenders International

Court shown ADI video of Anne the elephant being beaten and kicked

Posted: 19 November 2012. Updated: 23 November 2012

Harrowing ADI video footage was shown in court today (Monday 19th, November) as the trial began of circus owners Bobby and Moira Roberts at Northampton Crown Court today.

After some delays, due to technical difficulties the Court got to see the footage secretly filmed by Animal Defenders International (ADI) at the circus winter quarters in January and February last year. The video showed Anne the elephant chained to the ground and being beaten and kicked by workers.

Opening the case, Helen Law, prosecuting, told the Court: "the footage shows a total lack of supervision of staff responsible for Anne the elephant.” The prosecution also told the Court that between 21 January and 15 February 2011, ADI filmed Anne constantly chained by two legs.

The ADI Special Investigations Department Manager was also cross-examined regarding the footage.

Mr and Mrs Roberts are being jointly charged with a series of offences under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, to which they have pleaded not guilty:

1. Causing the elephant to suffer unnecessarily, by requiring the elephant to be chained to the ground at all times, contrary to section 4(1) of the Animal Welfare Act 2006.

2. Failing to take reasonable steps to prevent their employee from causing unnecessary suffering to the elephant, by repeatedly beating it, contrary to section 4(2) of the same Act.

3. Failing to take reasonable steps to ensure that the needs of the elephant were met to the extent required by good practice, contrary to section 9 of the same Act.

This is a test case, the first trial of circus owners and their responsibilities under the ‘duty of care’ detailed in the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
The trial continues tomorrow.

Notes to Editors:

Media contact:

ADI PR Desk: Angie Greenaway Tel: 020 7630 3344 or 07785 552548

Over 500 hours of video were shot by ADI investigators over a three and a half week period during January and February 2011. A camera observed activity in a barn where the animals are kept when not touring.

About Animal Defenders International
With offices in Los Angeles, London and Bogota, ADI campaigns across the globe on animals in entertainment, providing technical advice to governments, securing progressive animal protection legislation, drafting regulations and rescuing animals in distress. ADI has a worldwide reputation for providing video and photographic evidence exposing the behind-the-scenes suffering in industry and supporting this evidence with scientific research on captive wildlife and transport. ADI rescues animals all over the world, educates the public on animals and environmental issues.

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