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Sunday, August 7, 2011


Appeal dismissed in Lucy the elephant case


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Lucy the elephant. (Edmonton Sun/ File)
By Michelle Thompson,City Hall Bureau

Thursday, August 4, 2011
Court appeal over Lucy the elephant has been dismissed. The Alberta Court of Appeal is upholding an earlier court decision to dismiss legal action against the city over the Valley Zoo animal, the city said Thursday. A lawsuit was launched against the city by animal rights groups like PETA and Zoocheck, but the appeal court judges ruled the suit was inappropriate. “We are very pleased, but not surprised, that the Court of Appeal has ruled in favour of the City of Edmonton,” said lawyer Steven Phipps, who represented the city. “The majority of the judges are very clear that the applicants’ attempt to circumvent the appropriate regulatory authorities is not proper.” Controversy over the Asian elephant’s fate has been brewing for years. Animal rights activists have been calling for Lucy to be moved to a U.S. sanctuary, while zoo officials argued she was safer at the Edmonton Valley Zoo. Activists launched their lawsuit in February 2010. It was dismissed later that year. Phipps maintains that Lucy is being well looked after. “There are many independent parties monitoring Lucy’s care. They confirm her care needs are being met,” he said. “With this ruling, it’s now time to move forward and allow the exceptional people who work at the Edmonton Valley Zoo to focus on caring for Lucy and all of the other animals in its care.” Meanwhile, PETA said Thursday in a news release that it will continue its battle “to get Lucy removed from her lonely, neglectful imprisonment ...” michelle.thompson@sunmedia.ca

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