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Oregon judge refuses to be first in the nation to let animals sue

Lawyers from the ALDF urged Knowles to let the 8-year-old horse sue for the lifelong costs of his medical care. The horse Justice was discovered in March 2017 covered in lice, 300 pounds underweight and with frostbitten genitals.

AIMEE GREEN: ‘A judge threw out a lawsuit filed by animal rights activists in the name of a once-neglected horse, finding that animals don’t have a right to sue. In doing so, Washington County Pro-Tem Judge John Knowles refused to become the first judge in the nation to grant a non-human legal standing to sue. But Knowles gave lawyers for Justice the horse credit for being “quite creative” in their attempt to convince him otherwise.

During a hearing, lawyers from the Animal Legal Defense Fund [ALDF] urged Knowles to let the 8-year-old horse sue for the lifelong costs of his medical care. The horse — discovered in March 2017 covered in lice, 300 pounds underweight and with frostbitten genitals — was taken from its former owner, Gwendolyn Vercher of Cornelius. Vercher was convicted of first-degree animal neglect and paid close to $3,700 in restitution, but that didn’t cover the horse’s future medical costs.

So lawyers for Justice filed a $100,000 lawsuit, listing the horse as the sole plaintiff. Matthew Liebman, one of four lawyers for the horse, argued that animals are sentient beings. He also noted that animals can be listed as “victims” of neglect or abuse in criminal cases and indeed do have the right to file lawsuits seeking compensation when they’re treated cruelly’. SOURCE…

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