Whalers Find Grief When Friends of the Court Files Amicus Brief on Behalf of Whales

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[An Amicus Brief is a document that provides information and insight into legal proceedings of which they are not directly involved.  In this case, Ocean Defenders filed on behalf of Sea Shepherd and the whales they protect.   A link to the entire brief is at the end of this release].

Ocean Defenders Alliance Files Amicus Brief Supporting Sea Shepherd Conservation Society to Protect Whales Against Illegal Slaughter in U.S. District Court in Seattle, WA.

February 16, 2012 – Huntington Beach, CA– Ocean Defenders Alliance, a 501(c)(3) non-profit marine conservation organization, filed an amicus brief yesterday with the U.S. District Court in Seattle, WA in support of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (defendant) in a case against the Japan-based Institute of Cetacean Research (ICR) and Kyodo Senpaku Kaisha, LTD (plantiffs). Sea Shepherd, a Friday Harbor, WA based ocean conservation group whose annual voyages down to the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary to protect and defend whales from illegal commercial whaling by the ICR, are documented on the TV show, “Whale Wars”. Ocean Defenders Alliance submitted a 15-page amicus brief to urge the Court to consider the strong public interest in protecting and defending whales when contemplating the Plaintiffs’ request for a preliminary injunction against Sea Shepherd at the hearing today, Februrary 16th, 2012 in Seattle, WA.
“Ocean Defenders Alliance supports Sea Shepherd Conservation Society because it is imperative that commercial whaling stops. Sea Shepherd has been the only organization that has kept international focus on the barbaric slaughter of whales for the last 30 years”, said Kurt Lieber, Founder and President of Ocean Defenders Alliance, “Whales are some of the most highly social and intelligent species to ever live on this planet. Whales have a unique roll to play in our battle to bridge human consumerism and human compassion.  The vast majority of people want to see whales live in peace, but a few morally corrupt people only see whales as slabs of meat to be sold to the highest bidder.”
Highlights from the amicus brief:
“Australia premised its opposition to whaling on the apparently high intelligence of whales, a growing community conviction that whaling was immoral, the imminent availability of substitutes for whale products, the inhumane way that whales are killed, and the risks to the maintenance-and even survival-of some species”
“There is strong public condemnation of whaling in general and growing impatience with exploitation of exemptions to the moratorium. This is also reflected in the form of sharp criticism (by members of the IWC’s Scientific Committee) of the Japanese whaling at issue in this case, performed under the excuse of the scientific research exemption.”
“Due to public acceptance and awareness of the information available about the complex capacities exhibited by whales and the importance of whales within their communities, we are seeing gradual but undeniably steady advances toward recognizing in legal and non-legal contexts that whales should not be subjected to human-inflicted harms.”
To read the complete Amicus Brief visit: https://docs.google.com/open?id=0BwznEGMPRal0ZDJlODI4M2YtOGE1Yi00YTQ2LWFhY2UtYTdhZjE1MmQ2NTM2
Ocean Defenders Alliance (ODA) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit grassroots marine conservation organization founded in 2002.  ODA is committed to protecting Southern California’s near shore rocky reef and seabed ecosystems from dangerous man-made objects, focusing on derelict and abandoned commercial fishing gear that poses serious risk to marine life.  ODA has removed over 12,000 pounds of abandoned fishing net to date.  More information on ODA can be found at OceanDefendersAlliance.org

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