Archive for the ‘animal law’ Tag

From ALDF: Tiger in the Backyard? | 30 Second Animal Law   Leave a comment

From our friends The Animal Legal Defense Fund.

There are more tigers in captivity in the United States than left in the wild. We can help stop the abuse and exploitation of these magnificent cats by supporting The Big Cats & Public Safety Protection Act

This bill would prohibit private possession of big cats except at highly-qualified facilities like accredited zoos where they can be properly cared for and safely managed.

Take Action at this link with the easy contact form courtesy of Big Cat Rescue ~ Tampa FL:

HR 4122 ~ House Bill and S 3547 ~ Senate Bill:

Congratulations Baker and Donelson   Leave a comment

Congratulations! Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC, Receives Pro Bono Award for Efforts in Animal Law from Animal Legal Defense Fund. Attorneys from Baker Donelson are providing pro bono assistance in Tony’s case.

August 28, 2012

(New Orleans, LA/August 28, 2012) Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC, has been named the 2011 Advancement in Animal Law Pro Bono Achievement Award winner by the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF).

Over the last two years, Baker Donelson attorneys Monica A. Frois, Laura E. Carlisle, Erin Pelleteri, Brandy N. Sheely and Anne Derbes Wittmann have provided assistance to the ALDF in its efforts to secure the release of a Siberian-Bengal tiger. “Tony the Truck Stop Tiger” has been confined as a roadside exhibit at a Louisiana truck stop for more than ten years. Last year, a permanent injunction was granted against the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries preventing it from renewing the truck stop owner’s annual permit when it expired at the end of 2011.  Since that time, the truck stop owner has filed separate litigation in an effort to keep Tony at the truck stop.  Baker Donelson is continuing to assist ALDF in its fight to free Tony.

The case has galvanized the ALDF’s membership, and the Firm’s support, experience and commitment of pro bono hours is helping the ALDF achieve its mission of protecting the lives and advancing the interests of animals through the legal system.

Through its commitment to pro bono representation, Baker Donelson provides legal services to groups and individuals likely to be marginalized in the legal system due to economic barriers. Over the years, the Firm’s attorneys have provided a variety of counsel to many populations, including immigrants, refugees, the elderly and the impoverished. Baker Donelson’s efforts include work on a wide range of matters, such as advocating for the homeless and organizations that serve the homeless, death penalty litigation, providing corporate legal services to non-profit organizations and much more.

Additional information on Baker Donelson’s Pro Bono efforts is available at

A national, non-profit organization, the ALDF was founded in 1979 by attorneys in the field of animal law pursuing the enforcement of anti-cruelty laws and humane treatment of animals. For more information, please visit

ALDF: A Truck Stop is No Home For a Tiger   Leave a comment

The Animal Legal Defense Fund has been tireless in their efforts to see Tony released to a reputable sanctuary, and in their fight to protect the lives of so many animals who need a voice.

See Cases & Campaigns for more about the work ALDF does; there are also Action Alerts and Petitions you can sign to help animals.

If you would like to support ALDF’s work, please consider donating to their 2012 Annual Fund Drive.

Please also continue supporting Tony’s petition and sharing this beautiful tiger’s story.

From The Animal Legal Defense Fund:

A Truck Stop is No Home For a Tiger

Posted by Stephen Wells, ALDF’s Executive Director on July 12th, 2012

Tony, a Siberian-Bengal tiger, paces on the hard concrete surface of his cage. He has spent every day and night of the last eleven years on display at the Tiger Truck Stop in Grosse Tete, Louisiana – nearly his whole life. It’s no life for a tiger, or any other animal.

That’s why, despite all legal obstacles, the Animal Legal Defense Fund is tireless in our fight to make sure that Tony finds his way to a reputable, accredited sanctuary where he can live out his life in a nurturing environment, rather than one that exploits him as a profitable spectacle. Help us raise $250,000 during our 2012 Annual Fund Drive and join our fight to free Tony!

ALDF is currently involved in three separate lawsuits concerning Tony – a no holds barred effort to free him from the miserable conditions he’s forced to endure day and night. ALDF’s victory last year against the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries prevented the Department from renewing the annual permit that allowed Michael Sandlin, owner of Grosse Tete’s Tiger Truck Stop, to display Tony.

However, the Department has refused to seize Tony until Mr. Sandlin’s own lawsuit against the Department has resolved. Once Mr. Sandlin’s case is over, the Department should do its duty by acting quickly to ensure Tony’s removal to a humane sanctuary.

We are optimistic that we will prevail, and the court will uphold Louisiana’s right to protect public safety and animal welfare by prohibiting private possession of majestic animals like Tony.

Your support makes our fight for Tony possible! Join ALDF in fighting for Tony’s freedomfreedom from diesel fumes, harassment, and the unimaginable suffering of life in his lonely cage.

For Tony: Recent Posts From The Animal Legal Defense Fund   Leave a comment

Recents Facebook posts from The Animal Legal Defense Fund concerning the decision on Wednesday November 2, 2011 for Tony.

” ALDF hopes to work with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and Mr. Sandlin to find the best possible new home for Tony, providing recommendations for reputable sanctuaries where Tony can live out his life in a peaceful, natural environment. || Yes, Mr. Sandlin can appeal. It is unknown if he will. “!/AnimalLegalDefenseFund

Since 1979, the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) has been fighting to protect the lives and advance the interests of animals through the legal system. Founded by attorneys active in shaping the emerging field of animal law, ALDF has blazed the trail for stronger enforcement of anti-cruelty laws and more humane treatment of animals in every corner of American life. The Animal Legal Defense Fund is hard at work pushing the boundaries of the law to help ensure the lives and interests of animals everywhere are protected – from assisting with small town cruelty cases to filing suit against the federal government. We may be the only lawyers on Earth whose clients are all innocent!

Attorneys Fighting to Free Tony the Truck Stop Tiger Head Back to Court for New Trial   1 comment

November 1st, 2011

Court Will Rule on Standing of Tony Supporters to Fight for Him in Court, Will Once Again Decide His Fate

For immediate release

Lisa Franzetta, Animal Legal Defense Fund
Megan Backus, Animal Legal Defense Fund

Baton Rouge, La. – Tomorrow morning, the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) and outraged Louisiana residents return to East Baton Rouge District Court to square off against the owner of the Tiger Truck Stop in Grosse Tete, La., where Tony, a Siberian-Bengal tiger, has been confined as a roadside exhibit for over a decade. The same court granted ALDF’s original request for a permanent injunction in May 2011, a ruling that would have prevented the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries from renewing in December the annual permit that allows Michael Sandlin, owner of the Tiger Truck Stop, to keep Tony on display. In August, the Louisiana Court of Appeals ruled that Michael Sandlin and the Tiger Truck Stop must be named as defendants in the lawsuit and ordered a new trial, vacating the trial court’s earlier decision. In addition to this new trial, the Court will consider a motion by the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries to contest the plaintiffs’ standing to bring the lawsuit to free Tony.


Wednesday, November 2, 9:00 a.m.

East Baton Rouge District Courthouse
Room 8B (Judge R. Michael Caldwell’s courtroom)
300 North Boulevard, Baton Rouge

Since ALDF filed its original lawsuit in April 2011, it has argued that the Department violated state law in granting the permit to Michael Sandlin. In tomorrow’s hearing, the Court will again hear ALDF’s argument that Sandlin’s permit to own and display Tony should be invalidated, and that Tony should be released into the custody of ALDF or an accredited animal sanctuary where he can receive care and treatment and live out his life in a more natural environment, free from the 24-hour exposure to noise and diesel fumes and the taunts of visitors. ALDF is requesting both a permanent injunction, which would mean the state could not renew Sandlin’s permit in December, and a mandatory injunction, which would require that Sandlin’s current permit be revoked. The Court may choose to issue a decision in the case immediately following the hearing.

Tony has been on exhibit at the Tiger Truck Stop since 2000; he has lived there with no other tiger companions since 2003. ALDF’s lawsuit to free Tony has drawn the support of high profile advocates like Leonardo DiCaprio and True Blood’s Kristin Bauer and has galvanized activists around the world. The law offices of Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell, & Berkowitz, P.C. are providing pro bono assistance with the lawsuit.

“The Animal Legal Defense Fund is confident that the trial court got the law right the first time around and will again make the best decision for Tony,” says ALDF Executive Director Stephen Wells. “We would like nothing more than for Tony to spend this New Year’s in the comfort of an accredited sanctuary that is far better equipped to meet his basic needs and to give him the kind of life he deserves.”

Remember Tony During Louisiana Week For The Animals   5 comments

Louisiana Governor Jindal has proclaimed March 19 – 27th 2011 as The Third Annual Louisiana Week For The Animals.   There has been an ongoing action for Tony directed at Governor Jindal asking him to address Tony’s situation. Please make a point of contacting the Governor during this week about Tony; it’s especially important for Louisiana residents to advocate on Tony’s behalf.  Please keep your correspondence on point and respectful – while we all are passionate about Tony’s situation, composed and courteous letters, phone calls, etc. have a better chance of being taken seriously. Contact information for the Governor:

1. Call the Governor’s office:



Fax: 1-225-342-7099

2. Postal letters can be sent to:

Governor Bobby Jindal
Office of The Governor
P. O. Box 94004
Baton Rouge, LA 70804-9004

3. Online e-mail contact form:

4. Follow Tony on Twitter:!/FreeTonyTiger and tweet this petition at Bobby Jindal:

RT @freetonytiger: Plz RT 2 Sign: Petition @BobbyJindal To Help Tony #Tiger @ #Louisiana #Truck Stop #FreeTonyTiger

Direct link to petition: You can reference the text of the petition for your letters to the Governor as well.

The 3rd Annual Louisiana Week For The Animals includes events state-wide that celebrate our relationship with animals and also raise awareness to help animals.

From The Louisiana Week For The Animals website:

“Throughout the week, shelters, rescue groups, and humane organizations across the state will be hosting exciting and life-changing animal-related special events.  Educators, students, businesses and caring citizens across Louisiana will be joining in planning fun-filled activities to celebrate and help the animals. 

Events will include adoption fairs, spay/neuter awareness events, shelter days, educational displays/programs in libraries, awareness building activities for farm animals and therapy dogs visiting hospitals and nursing homes.

Also to be included are a salute to our canine military and police dogs, feral cat initiatives, animal law events, special educational programs, blessings for the animals, and full-filled festival days for families to come and enjoy food, music and the amazing animals!”

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