The government has unveiled federal terrorism charges against two animal rights activists accused of helping to free minks and foxes from fur farms in rural Illinois. In newly unsealed indictments, the prosecutors accuse Tyler Lang and Kevin Oliff of freeing about 2,000 mink from their cages on a fur farm, and then removing parts of the fence surrounding the property so the mink could escape. The activists are also accused of spray painting "Liberation is Love" on the farm's walls. Lang and Oliff have been indicted under the controversial Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA), which each count carrying a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. We are joined by reporter Will Potter, who covers animal rights and environmental issues at GreenIstheNewRed.com. "It really doesn't matter how you feel about animal rights groups, or about these alleged crimes of stealing animals," Potter says of the AETA, which he argues is too broad while criminalizing protests and civil disobedience. "This is really about a corporate campaign to demonize their opposition and to use terrorism resources to shut down a movement." Potter also discusses his wildly successful Kickstarter campaign to purchase a drone for use in photographing abuses at factory farms.
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