UPDATED (7/17): Statements from Tyler and Kevin included below
Regarding the AETA indictment of Tyler Lang & Kevin Olliff…
First, let’s acknowledge the timing of this event: We’re well aware that arresting Tyler Lang on an indictment of federal charges was coordinated to coincide with the annual National Animal Rights Conference and the Fight or Flight Tour fundraiser. It was the FBI’s blatant and clumsy attempt to scare activists, create divisiveness, and deter Tyler and others from the above-ground activism they practice. But word of the event spread quickly—not only among attendees at the LA conference, but throughout the country’s network of animal advocates—and one thing is resoundingly clear: we’re angry, but we’re not shaken.
Last summer, ten fur farms were raided in ten weeks, resulting in more than 10,000 mink, foxes, and even a rare bobcat being freed from certain death at the hands of fur farmers. And since the beginning of the government’s resulting witch hunt—when Kevin and Tyler were arrested in the course of a routine traffic stop on a road trip last August, when Kevin’s ID came up with a “domestic terrorist” flag—we’ve all known that law enforcement has been trying to connect dots that they simply cannot. We’re in the midst of what the FBI is attempting to make into a classic AETA prosecution. And the activist community is all too familiar with the insidiousness and inaccuracy that underpins this law…
Ultimately, we want it known that Kevin and Tyler are not faltering. They’re aware of their position, they’re confident in the facts, and they want to make sure other activists are not set off course by these incidents.
“This is not an indictment against two activists. It’s an attempt to indict an entire movement in the eyes of the public. The fur industry confines and kills millions of animals every year for fashion—but the American government points the finger and calls animal advocates violent. I certainly believe people are savvy enough to see the truth.” —Kevin Olliff
“The recent charges brought against Kevin and me are not only wrong but egregious. When we think of terrorism, we think of violence being committed against individuals. The government’s “terrorist” targeting of two friends with a history of speaking out against injustice is an affront to the meaning of what violence really is, and a slap in the face to a public that sadly knows what terrorism actually looks like.” —Tyler Lang