University of Iowa Claims $450K Loss in November ALF Raid

For Immediate Release
March 18, 2005

University of Iowa Claims $450K Loss in November ALF Raid
Admits Insurance Will Not Cover Loss

Iowa- The University of Iowa released figures this week that estimate the damage done in November by an Animal Liberation Front (ALF) raid on its animal testing laboratories has cost the University at least $450,000. Increased security costs for the period of time around the raid were included, although not costs for additional long-term measures.

In November, members of the ALF entered laboratories at the University and freed more than 400 imprisoned animals that faced lives of misery and torture at the hands of experimenters. In addition, they destroyed equipment used in their ongoing and unnecessary torture. No one has been charged by authorities in the case.

UI spokesman Steve Parrott said this week the University is self-insured with a $2 million deductible, so it would have to cover all damages. It is not yet known which departments or funds will be billed for the loss. He said the break-in set researchers back three to six weeks, on average, not counting lost data. The dollar loss figure could continue to climb, he added.

Federal authorities, obviously frustrated in their attempts to identify the liberationists, released a vague description of a female suspect nearly four months after the raid.

Jerry Vlasak, MD, a former animal researcher and now an outspoken critic of animal experimentation, states that “Researchers in labs like the one raided at UI are wasting valuable research dollars in futile attempts to apply data obtained from non-humans to human patients. Psychological experiments are even less likely to be useful, as the complex psycho-social differences between humans and animals are so different.”

Recent photographs taken during the raid show macaque monkeys restrained in stereo-tactic devices, and researcher John Freeman glibly holding a test subject in an overt display of disrespect. All the photos are available electronically in high-resolution format here.