Judge dismisses PETA’s slavery claim against SeaWorld

An American Court has thrown out animal rights campaigners PETA’s controversial case against San Diego’s SeaWorld, after allegations that they ‘enslave’ whales.

A Complaint made by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) claimed that the popular attraction was in breach of the 13th amendment, which outlaws involuntary servitude and slavery.

Allegations stated that five of the parks whales – Tilikum, Katina, Corky, Kasatka and Ulises – were forced to perform daily and live in tanks.

District Judge Jeffrey Miller dismissed the case against SeaWorld, but according to Fox News he was the first judge in history to listen to the arguments presented in court over the possibility of granting the group of orcas constitutional rights.

Theodore Shaw, SeaWorld’s attorney defended the park, slating the lawsuit as a waste of the court’s time and resources.

“With all due respect, the court does not have the authority to even consider this question.

“Neither orcas nor any other animal were included in the ‘We the people’ … when the Constitution was adopted”.

The sea life park denied mistreating the animals and said it rescued injured orcas in the wild.

However legal experts announced that the case opened the debate on the possibilities of increasing animal rights.

In a statement attorney Jeffery Kerr – who represented the five ‘plaintiffs’ – said: “Today’s decision does not change the fact that the orcas who once lived naturally wild and free, are today kept as slaves by SeaWorld.

“PETA will regroup and determine how to continue to work for the legal protection they deserve”.

SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment currently own 10 parks across the country, including three SeaWorlds, which host 25 million visitors each year.

Article by Charlotte Greenhalgh