When the Liebel Family Circus
planned on doing a series of shows at National Guard armories in Arkansas, it
didn’t plan on PETA. We wrote to Major General William D. Wofford of the
Arkansas National Guard and let him know that the U.S. Department of Agriculture
(USDA) recently formally charged the circus’s owner, Hugo Liebel, with almost three dozen violations of the Animal Welfare Act.
The
National Guard wisely decided not to associate itself with cruelty to animals and canceled all its scheduled performances. 

Liebel’s Run-Ins With the Law

Hugo
Liebel has a long history of animal abuse. His most recent USDA charges include
repeated failure to provide adequate veterinary care to Nosey, the poor old elephant
he uses in his shows, who has been suffering from a chronic skin condition and
unexplained rapid weight loss, among other ailments. The USDA complaint against
Liebel also includes multiple charges for illegally chaining Nosey by two legs
so tightly that she could neither lie down nor take more than a single step in
any direction. Liebel also faces charges for allowing a spider monkey to escape
and not recapturing him for nearly six weeks and for chaining a spider monkey
to a pony for more than an hour.

A Horrific Beating—One Worker’s Account

An
affidavit from a circus employee recounts Liebel’s affinity for bullhooks and
electric prods and details one incident in which Nosey was staked by all four
legs and beaten with a bullhook by Liebel. Liebel also instructed other workers
to beat her with objects such as shovel handles and sledge hammers.

What You Can Do

Ideally,
all circus performances using captive animals would become a history-book
horror story. But in the meantime, Congress is considering the Traveling Exotic Animal
Protection Act
,
which would require vast improvements for animals used in circuses. Please take
a moment to urge your representatives to pass this historic piece of
legislation. Then get everyone you know to do the same, for sake of elephants
and tigers.

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Article source: PETA Files

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