December 12, 2012

    Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Ikea Monkey's Owner Threatens Legal Action

Says animal has right to choose

The owner of Darwin, the rhesus monkey who became an Internet sensation after he was found wandering a Toronto Ikea in a shearling coat, is threatening legal action against Toronto’s animal control services.  Darwin was taken by animal control to the Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary in rural Ontario, but his owner, Yasmin Nakhuda, says he should have the right to choose where he goes.

"How do we know what he needs unless he's given the right to choose? I think he should be given the right to choose,” she told reporters. “If he chooses something else than me, that's fine. For me, it has never been about me, it has always been about him." According to Nakhuda, Darwin rarely left her side and even stayed with her while she slept.

It is illegal to keep monkeys as pets in Toronto and Nakhuda was fined $240. Darwin will be placed with two Japanese macaques and two more rhesus monkeys to help the seven-month-old grow accustomed to contact with his own kind.

Via The Telegraph/National Post


    Photo: Steve Snodgrass/Flickr

Record Seizure of Illegal Ivory in Malaysia

Larger than all 2011 seizures

Authorities in Malaysia seized a record 1,500 elephant tusks bound for China on Monday, a shipment weighing more than all the ivory seized globally last year. Officials found the 24-ton shipment, worth more than $19 million, in two shipping containers from Togo at a terminal near Kuala Lumpur.

“The two containers were found to be filled with sawn timber,” said state customs director Azis Yaacub. “Inside the wood there were secret compartments that were filled with elephant tusks.”

There were already several large seizures earlier this year in New York (0.9 tons), Sri Lanka (1.5 tons), and Hong Kong (five tons in two seperate stings). Experts blame the high price of illegal ivory for the booming underground trade.

"I thought that when the international ivory trade ban was agreed in 1989, we would see a permanent reversal of fortunes for this beleaguered species. How wrong I was—the respite was temporary," said Will Travers, chief executive of the Born Free Foundation. "Experts estimate that between 20,000 and 30,000 elephants are being illegally killed each year to fuel demand, largely driven by China."

Via The Guardian


    Photo: PoweriPics/Flickr

Armstrong Fought Subpoena, Disclosure

According to new documents

Lance Armstrong pushed to keep the U.S. Postal Service's inquiry into his time with the team secret after trying and failing to quash their subpoena, newly-released court records reveal.

According to the documents, Postal Service investigators asked for a collection of Armstrong's records including training journals and correspondence with now-banned doctor Michele Ferrari. Federal Magistrate Judge Deborah Robinson ordered the subpoena and Armstrong's efforts to conceal it made public last week, rejecting an argument from the cyclist's lawyers that the documents could compromise the secrecy of an ongoing grand jury process.

"They've been given everything they wanted and that they asked for ... months ago," Armstrong attorney Tim Herman said Tuesday.

Armstrong is currently facing a federal whistleblower lawsuit filed by dethroned Tour de France winner and confessed doper Floyd Landis. Department of Justice officials are considering joining the suit.

Via Fox Sports


Dingo in Australia

Dingo in Australia     Photo: ogwen/Flickr

Outback Police Warn Against Apple Maps

Responsible for Australian strandings

Police in Australia are warning travelers not to rely on Apple Maps after the software was linked to several stranded motorists in the middle of an arid National Park. It turns out that motorists attempting to reach the city of Mildura by the latest iPhone's GPS have instead been directed to Murray Sunset National Park, a hot, dry, isolated area some 43 miles away from their destination. "Some of the motorists located by police have been stranded for up to 24 hours without food or water and have walked long distances through dangerous terrain to get phone reception," police said.

Via Slate