On Tuesday, Debbie Vincent, an animal rights activist from the Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) campaign was sentenced to six years in prison for conspiracy to blackmail after a five week long trial at Winchester Crown Court. She was also given an Anti Social Behaviour Order which means she can be arrested if she protests against or contacts Huntingdon Life Sciences (HLS) or its business partners for a further five years after her release from prison.
The sentence should serve as a wake up call to anti-capitalists of the need to offer solidarity to those who have been singled out for repression because of their involvement in effective resistance to corporate power.
A press release from the Blackmail 3 support campaign quotes Debbie: “I have been made an example of because I put myself up as a public face of Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty and for believing that such places as Huntingdon Life Sciences should be resigned to the history books.” “In some ways I’m really not surprised I was found guilty, as I don’t believe anyone can get justice when faced with a political conspiracy charge and the huge resources of the state and multinationals against me. I will always have hope and will always continue to try my best to make the inhabitants of this planet more compassionate to all and try to make the world a better place for all.”