A vegan activist charged with stealing a $1500 calf from a farm in Western Australia has gone on trial, posting on social media hours earlier that he is doing “what is right, not what is easy”.
Direct Action Everywhere ringleader James Warden, 25, and Arkadiusz Swiebodzinski faced Perth Magistrates Court today accused of breaking into White Rocks dairy farm in Brunswick and stealing an 11-day-old calf in October 2018.
The court heard Swiebodzinski drove to the farm with Warden and Mihaela Herceg, who previously pleaded guilty to her role.
Blankets were placed on the back seat, then Warden and Herceg entered an unlocked shed and took the calf.
“He was just curled up by himself,” Herceg testified.
The calf, which they named Theodore, was taken to animal sanctuary Greener Pastures in Waroona but authorities later returned it to the farm.
The activists used a mobile phone to film themselves on the farm and the video clips were played in court, showing Warden slinging the animal over his shoulders.
They also took several photographs.
Herceg said she knew where to go on the farm because she had earlier looked it up on Google Maps.
Before the trial started, activists wearing shirts that read “Right to Rescue” stood outside court holding signs, including one large banner that read: “Prosecute animal abusers, not animal activists.”
In an Instagram post today, Warden posted a video of the calf.
View this post on Instagram
Theodore as he was taken from a veal farm in Western Australia. This beautiful bovine has taught me a lot in the short amounts of time we had together. I was taught kindness, compassion, and trust. We refuse to allow for his otherwise destined fate to be normalised. We will not allow for an industry or system to bend or curve us to believe that liberating an animal is wrong. Do what is right, not what is easy. Thank you to my brother Arkadius Swiebodzinski for standing with me through this entire process and ultimately trying to help Theodore and all animals. @dxe_arkadius @directactioneverywhere #animalliberation #vegansofig #vegan #animal #love #compassionisnotacrime #meatthevictims #directactioneverywhere #perth #savetheo #269 #animalrights #compassion
“This beautiful bovine has taught me a lot in the short amounts of time we had together. I was taught kindness, compassion, and trust,” he wrote.
“We will not allow for an industry or system to bend or curve us to believe that liberating an animal is wrong.”
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