For Immediate Release
January 20, 2006
Press Officer and 10 Other Sea Shepherd Crew Found Guilty in Prince Edward Island Court for Defending Seals
Charlottetown, PEI (Canada)- Dr. Jerry Vlasak, a North American Animal Liberation Press Officer, is one of eleven Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (SSCS) volunteer crew found guilty this week in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island for interfering with the bludgeoning of baby seals. Nancy K. Orr, Provincial Court Judge, ruled the 11 Sea Shepherd crew had violated a Canadian law, absurdly called the “Seal Protection Act”, prohibiting the approach with one half nautical mile of a sealer in the process of killing seals.
Although Dr. Vlasak had been punched in the face by a seal killer before being arrested on the ice by the RCMP March 31 of last year, the man was never charged by the federal police. Video footage documented the battery, as well as Dr. Vlasak’s non-violent stance at the time.
The Crown is also looking for an additional Fisheries Act Order against Jerry Vlasak only, banning him from attending sealing areas near Newfoundland and the Gulf area for a period of three years from 2006-2008 inclusive.
At least 6 of the defendants, including Dr. Vlasak, have pledged to not pay the $1000 Canadian fine imposed by the judge, and will surrender themselves to serve jail time, probably in March. Formal sentencing is set for February 8.
In a bizarre move calculated to further distance themselves from Dr. Vlasak and his comments that violence would be morally justified in self-defense of activists and the seals, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has declined to pay their former board member’s legal fees. Far from projecting their well-honed image of doing what it takes to stop the barbaric killing on the ice, Sea Shepherd has recently run for cover when it was suggested that seals have a right to be defended by the same methods that would be used to defend humans in the same circumstance.
Dr. Vlasak stated, “The time has come to stop the atrocity occuring every year on the ice packs of Newfoundland and the St. Lawrence; unfortunately, that may mean the ice one day runs red with not only the blood of the seals and the blood of activists, but the blood of the seal killers.”
Vlasak went on to say: “Similar words got me ousted as a board member from Sea Shepherd, but I stand by them and without regret. If it were your child or companion being clubbed to death, would violence in self-defense not be morally justified in order to stop it?”
For more information or to obtain footage of the seal kill please call or e-mail the North American Animal Liberation Press Office.