Snitch Alert, Melbourne, Australia: Farmer goes undercover as animal activist to get inside knowledge

Snitch Alert: Melbourne, Australia

A WESTERN District farmer is acting as an undercover animal rights activist in a bid to protect his industry.

The Weekly Times can reveal the sheep farmer began infiltrating animal rights groups four years ago because he believed activists were getting away with crimes with just a “slap on the wrist”.

The farmer has a fake “stereotypical vegan” Facebook account to gain access to private vegan groups and discussions online.

He also attends protests and even private social gatherings with local animal activists.

“I thought I better start watching out because you never know when they’re going to come,” he said.

“I meet them, talk to them and protest alongside them.

“You have to bite your tongue 99 per cent of the time.

“I’ve actually stopped quite a lot of sit-ins or disruptions — about three in the last four or five months — by letting the police and venue know it’s coming.

“If a scruffy bloke can get in on it maybe the police need to start doing it.”

The farmer said while he had heard many conversations about stolen livestock, he had not witnessed or gone as far as to take part in it as his “vegan alter ego”.

Victorian Farmers Federation egg president Brian Ahmed, who has had activists break in to his Werribee farm, said while “two wrongs don’t make a right” he was not surprised it had come to this.

“I think sooner or later someone had to take action,” Mr Ahmed said.

“I’m disappointed authorities haven’t done enough so we have had to get to this level,” he said.

“Unless our government takes a stand for agriculture in this country we’re going to have more and more of this.”

The undercover animal activist said he would like to see “a total reform of the trespassing laws here in Victoria”.

“We’re all just sick and tired of it,” he said.

“We’re just trying to put food on the table.”