Regional News

Berkeley lawyer-activist takes goat away from ‘inhumane’ conditions

KCBA News
February 23, 2018 11:56 am
By: Amber Lee

POSTED: FEB 22 2018 07:29AM PST

VIDEO POSTED: FEB 21 2018 11:32PM PST

A Berkeley lawyer regularly livestreams and posts videos of himself and other activists removing animals that they say are sick or kept in what they describe as inhumane conditions.

Wayne Hsiung says his work rescuing animals takes place not only in the Bay Area, but across the country and as far away as China.

He says he’s been arrested many times and remains undeterred.
Hsiung showed KTVU video of himself removing a baby goat from a meat farm outside the Bay Area on Feb. 10. Hsiung says the animal was sick and infested with lice.

He says he works as a lawyer whose expertise is in technology, but that his passion is being founder of the animal rights group Direct Action Everywhere also known as DxE.

“Our mission is quite simple. Anywhere where there’s an animal in need, we try to assist them,” says Hsiung.

The activist says he receives tips from all over the country and world about animals being abused.

He and volunteers respond by visiting locations where the animals are kept.

They say if they see signs an animal is sick or abused, they remove it, document the process by taking cell phone video, and post it on social media.

“We believe the consumers have the right to know what’s actually happening behind these closed doors,” says Hsiung.

But one self- described goat farmer sent us a statement which says in part,

“Wayne Hsiung and his group DxEare criminals. They brag about breaking onto people’s farms and ranches to steal livestock.”

Hsiung says animals are treated inhumanely at farms, slaughterhouses and research facilities.

“If we want to make the human condition better, we rely on animal research,” says John Ngai, UC Berkeley professor of neuroscience. The scientist uses animals in his research. He says the animals are treated as humanely as possible.

Ngai says every medicine, surgery and therapy that humans use to treat maladies are based on animal research.

“The future cures for devastating diseases like cancer and neurodegenerative diseases will rely on the current and future use of animals in research,” says Ngai.

But Hsiung says with advances in technology, he hopes that animal rights activists can work with scientists to come up with alternatives.

The activist says the goat he removed earlier this month from a farm is now thriving in foster care

“We’re confident that when people are actually empowered to make choices they believe in, the world will change for animals. A lot of these industries will gradually disappear and the future will be that animals won’t be unnecessarily harmed,” says Hsiung.

The animal rights activist says he has been arrested more than a dozen times in the past ten years and charged with trespassing.  But Hsiung says each time, the charges were dropped.

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