- In response to the People for The Ethical Treatment of Animals' (PETA) recent threats to sue the family owned DeYoung Family Zoo,
Harold DeYoung, owner and operator of the zoo
, filed a lawsuit today, December 27, 2016, for declaratory and injunctive relief and defamation against the radical animal rights organization.
Kurtis B. Reeg, the managing partner of Goldberg Segalla, LLP's, St. Louis office, and his colleague Lynn A. Lehnert, both attorneys representing Cavalry Group member, Harold DeYoung, filed the lawsuit in response to PETA's false claims that the zoo's possession of certain chimpanzees is in violation of the federal Endangered Species Act.
Mark Patterson, CEO of The Cavalry Group, LLC stated, "PETA's false allegations against the DeYoung family zoo is nothing more than an effort to run a successful and law abiding animal enterprise out of business while at the same time using it's slanted media reports as a fundraiser for this radical animal rights group. PETA's false claims are rooted in emotionally charged propaganda aligned with their radical animal rights ideology, and PETA has repeatedly used this tactic and their fundraising to attack small business owners."
The DeYoung Family Zoo, a mainstay business and attraction in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan for many years
, has provided outstanding care and habitat for the chimpanzees who would perish if introduced back into the wild. PETA, which is considered a militant animal rights group, advocates banning private ownership of exotic animals, and claims the DeYoung's chimps would be better off living out their lives in a so-called animal sanctuary, typically run by like-minded animal rightists who know little about proper care of chimpanzees. PETA's track record shows very little interest in the negative consequences of their actions.
The DeYoung Family Zoo, a member of the nationwide animal enterprise advocacy group The Cavalry Group, is fighting back in court to protect their lawful business against the abuse from this activist animal rights group.