From: Miguel Moutinho | ANIMAL

ANIMAL successfully stopped cruel and illegal "Brazilian Rodeo" that was supposed to happen last weekend, near Lisbon (Portugal)

ANIMAL´s intervention lead the police to stop the rodeo and lead its promoters to cancel the event immediately, even before the transport of any animal to the place where it was meant to happen

For Immediate Release

8 June 2004

Press Contact

Miguel Moutinho (Mobile: 00 351 96 235 81 83)

Chief Executive Officer of ANIMAL

In the afternoon of last Thursday, ANIMAL was informed that an illegal "Brazilian Rodeo" was being organised to happen last Sunday, 6 June, in a small town near Lisbon, the capital of Portugal. This animal rights organisation immediately notified all the local and regional hierarchy of the National Guard (the letter sent to the highest commanding officer of the National Guard in the Lisbon area can be seen below), informing this police force, with more than 48 hours before the event, that this rodeo was being organised, explaining why rodeos are not permitted by law in Portugal, for what ANIMAL demanded that the National Guard prevented the cruel use of animals in this activity.

Last Saturday, with more than 24 hours before the rodeo, ANIMAL established several contacts by phone with the local and regional commanding officers of the National Guard, trying to understand what kind of intervention would this police force take, and making clear that rodeos are prohibited by the Portuguese Animal Protection Law, for which the National Guard would have to stop this particular event, especially considering that these authorities had been notified of the plans for this rodeo to happen with enough time to take the operational steps adequate to prevent the latter.

Last Sunday, at 12:00 (about six hours before the rodeo), when members of ANIMAL were getting ready to go to the place of the rodeo to make sure that the National Guard would intervene and stop it from happening, the TV news reporting team that was covering this case informed our organisation that the National Guard had already told the promoters of the rodeo that they could not carry it out, letting them know that this was due to the intervention of ANIMAL, which had so strong an impact that the promoters decided themselves to cancel the rodeo immediately, realising that ANIMAL would not only be present at the event to try to stop it but would also resort to all the legal procedures against all the institutions and individuals involved in this rodeo, if it could not be successfully stopped.

Miguel Moutinho, Chief Executive Officer of ANIMAL, says, "This was a very happy and important victory. The intensive legal work and the strong pressure that we developed for three days to stop this rodeo from happening were compensated by avoiding the panic, fear, distress and physical torture of the bulls and horses that would be barbarically tortured in this event. And the success of this intervention by ANIMAL does not end in stopping this event in particular and in saving these specific animals. A precedent, of strong legal value, was established in which concerns rodeos in Portugal, as ANIMAL made it clear that, in future occasions, if any other rodeo is to be organised, this case will be an excellent and most useful precedent to stop all the other rodeos from happening in Portugal. ANIMAL will be vigil and will intervene immediately as soon as we know of plans to promote any other rodeo or similar activity in Portugal." | ANIMAL |


ANIMAL Letter to the Commander of the 2nd Territorial Brigade of the Portuguese National Guard

Lisbon, June 4, 2004

His Excellency the Commander of the 2nd Territorial Brigade of the National Guard:

Dear Sir,
ANIMAL - an animal rights organization legally registered with the NIPC 504 275 089 - was informed yesterday, through a denounce of several citizens that based this information in several signs in the locality of Caneças, that, next Sunday, June 6, at 6 p.m., a "Brazilian Rodeo" is scheduled to happen in the Equestrian Center of Casal do Penedo, in the locality of D. Maria - Caneças, in the municipality of Odivelas, next to Lisbon.

According to the programme announced in the referred signs, in this "Brazilian Rodeo" there will be "mounting of wild bulls and horses".

The Legal Department of ANIMAL has analysed this case and we have concluded that this "Brazilian Rodeo" is an illegal activity, for:

1) "Brazilian Rodeos", as any other sort of rodeo, and the acts in which these consist, are in no way considered in the existing Regulation of Bullfighting Shows - because these are not even seen as bullfighting activities -, which, as you know, is the legislative regulation that determines and specifies the conditions in which bullfighting activities should happen;

2) "Brazilian Rodeos", as any other sort of rodeo, and the acts in which these consist, are in no way considered nor permitted, whether explicitly or implicitly, by any other existing law or regulation;

3) according to the Number 1 of the Article 1st of the Law N.º 92/95, of 12th September (Animal Protection Law), "All the unjustified violence against animals is prohibited, such as all the acts which consist in unnecessarily inflicting death, cruel and prolonged pain and suffering, or severe injuries, to an animal", from which one concludes that all the practises and activities that do not conform with the latter legal norm, and that are not explicitly allowed as exceptions or permitted by law, are prohibited;

4) due to the fact that "Brazilian Rodeos" consist in inflicting cruel and prolonged physical and emotional pain and suffering to animals (namely to bovines and horses), with a high probability of resulting in the killing of these animals, and being certain that the infliction of this pain and suffering and potential death to these animals is absolutely unjustified and unnecessary, this kind of activity does not conform with the referred Number 1 of the Article 1st of the Law N.º 92/95, of 12th September.

Since it is known, with more than 48 hours of anticipation, that this illegal act is really planned to happen, and since it is also known the exact day, hour and place where this rodeo is to be carried out, and having in consideration that this information is confirmed beyond any doubt by numerous signs that can be easily found in the locality of D. Maria - Caneças, ANIMAL is therefore addressing you, as the Commander of the 2nd Territorial Brigade of the National Guard, to take the necessary and adequate steps to stop this illegal activity from happening.

Furthermore, ANIMAL makes it clear that the present request that we are addressing to you in requesting the referred intervention of the National Guard is presented under the right that with this purpose is conferred to this organisation when, in the Article 10th of the Law N.º 92/95, of 12th September, the active legal procedure legitimacy of animal protection organisations (such as ANIMAL) is established, namely when the latter stipulates that "Animal protection societies that are legally registered have the legitimacy to require from all the authorities and legal courts the preventive and urgent necessary and adequate measures to stop on-going or imminent violations of the present law".

ANIMAL is also informing all the other local and regional commanding officers of the National Guard about this imminent infraction to the Animal Protection Law, and with the same requirement to the National Guard, so that the proper intervention from this police force may happen.

At last, we inform you that we are also releasing this information to all the media so that this highly grave situation may be publicly reported. Moreover, we also inform you that a group of members of ANIMAL will be on the place of the rodeo in the afternoon of June 6 to make sure that this cruel and illegal rodeo will not happen and that no infractions to the Animal Protection Law will be committed.

Thanking you in advance for the kind attention that we trust you will give to this request of ours, and being certain that the National Guard will intervene to enforce the law and will not allow the perpetration of this illegal act, please accept our most respectful regards.

Yours, very respectfully,

For ANIMAL, For the Animals,

Miguel Moutinho

Chief Executive Officer of ANIMAL