Horrific reality of vivisection revealed by sensational legal
Uncaged Campaigns has achieved an astonishing legal success by
winning the right to publish the Diaries of
Despair report and over a thousand pages of confidential
documents. Uncaged Campaigns argued successfully that it was in
the public interest to reveal the shocking truth
behind one of Britain's most extreme programmes of animal experiments
in recent history.
Between 1994 and 2000, hundreds of higher primates were subjected
to grotesque 'xenotransplantation' experiments. Hearts
and kidneys from genetically engineered piglets were transplanted
into the necks, abdomens and chests of monkeys and baboons captured
from the wild.
The primates were then injected and force-fed massive doses of
immune-suppressing drugs in a vain attempt to prevent the alien
organs from being rejected. The results were truly appalling.
The research was conducted by a biotechnology company, Imutran
Ltd, which is a subsidiary of the multinational drug firm
Novartis Pharma AG, in collaboration with the University
of Cambridge. The experiments took place at the controversial
Huntingdon Life Sciences laboratories.
The report and campaign are called 'Diaries of Despair'
in recognition of the severe suffering inflicted on hundreds of
primates revealed in the researchers' own detailed records.
The leaked confidential documents give a historically unprecedented
insight into the disturbing world of vivisection. The main initial
goal of the Diaries of Despair campaign is for the establishment
of an independent judicial inquiry to investigate
the incriminating evidence of Government malpractice and collusion,
and to prevent such cruelty from being repeated.
A new era
The historic victory came after an arduous High Court battle. The
Diaries of Despair were originally exposed by Uncaged Campaigns
in September 2000, gaining national media coverage. Within a week
however, Imutran had gained a temporary injunction banning Diaries
of Despair, and a 'David and Goliath' struggle ensued
as the company attempted to keep the information out of the public
In autumn 2002, the Defendants were lining up a court hearing,
claiming that Imutran and Novartis had failed in their duty to disclose
key documents related to animal suffering and their relationship
with the Government. The full trial was expected to take place in
In April 2003, a new Court order ratified an out-of-court settlement:
Imutran and Novartis had surrendered in their attempt to suppress
the Diaries of Despair.
Dan Lyons, author of Diaries of Despair and a
joint Defendant with Uncaged Campaigns, comments:
"We have consistently argued throughout the
proceedings that the clear evidence of horrific animal suffering
and Government misconduct means that there is an overwhelming public
interest in the publication of these confidential documents. Ironically,
the fact that we have been forced to win a legal battle to publish
the evidence simply confirms the scandalous implications of the
"Now, for the first time in history, the public
can discover the true scale of misery and distress caused by vivisection,
and the corrupt politics that allows such atrocities to take place.
We're entering a new era in the debate about animal experiments."
Now read on...