You might remember the 2004 animal-rights attack on a University of Iowa animal laboratory, carried out by the terrorist Animal Liberation Front (ALF). Here’s the scene: 55-gallon drums filled with acid-soaked research documents, 401 “liberated” laboratory animals, the continuous harassment of researchers, and a warning to “stop or be stopped.” So what does a former PETA lawyer who works for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) have to do with this? That’s likely the question a prosecutor has for HSUS attorney Leana Stormont, who was subpoenaed Monday to testify before a federal grand jury about the raid.
Who exactly is Leana Stormont? The former animal control worker graduated from the University of Iowa Law School, and went on to become the Midwest Coordinator of Stop Animal Exploitation Now, a group that (according to the Los Angeles Times) provides research to the rest of the animal rights industry -- including HSUS and the misnamed Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine -- with suggestions about who's ripe for targeting.
While enrolled at the U. of I., Stormont helped lead the Iowa Law Student Animal Defense Fund. She was a third-year law student when the ALF lab attack occurred. About two months afterward, Stormont’s group hosted animal rights radical Steven Best, who spoke in defense of the ALF terrorists, saying he’d sacrifice the life of a stranger to save his dog.
Best was a co-founder of the North American Animal Liberation Press Office and has been listed as a “press officer” for the ALF alongside the murder-endorsing Jerry Vlasak. Despite this shady résumé, Stormont writes that Best is “a courageous and provocative thinker.”
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