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Appellate Brief Filed In Connecticut Elephant Rights Case

The Connecticut trial court erred not only in dismissing the NhRP's petition on the grounds that is frivolous, but also in claiming that the NhRP lacked standing to bring the claim.

GLOBE NEWSWIRE: ‘Citing errors by the Connecticut Superior Court and New York judges’ recent embrace of nonhuman animal legal personhood and rights, the Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP) has filed a brief in The Appellate Court of Connecticut, where it is seeking review of the lower court’s dismissal of its petition for a common law writ of habeas corpus on behalf of Beulah, Karen, and Minnie, three elephants held captive at a traveling circus based in Goshen.

The Connecticut Superior Court’s assertion that the NhRP’s lawsuit is “wholly frivolous on its face” contrasts sharply with the increasing receptivity to nonhuman animal legal personhood and rights in neighboring New York State. In June, just weeks after New York Court of Appeals Judge Eugene Fahey issued an historic opinion criticizing the lower courts for holding that only human beings could be persons with rights, New York’s Fourth Judicial Department “unanimously accepted the claim the NhRP has made to the New York courts for almost five years: nonhuman animals can be legal persons,” said Steven M. Wise, founder and president of the NhRP…

The NhRP argues that the Connecticut trial court erred not only in dismissing the NhRP’s petition on the grounds that is frivolous, but also in claiming that the NhRP lacked standing to bring the claim because it lacked a relationship with the elephants. The NhRP points out in its brief that, for two centuries, Connecticut courts have permitted anyone to seek habeas corpus on behalf of someone who is imprisoned and unable to seek habeas corpus herself.

The NhRP is asking the appellate court to reverse the trial court’s decision and remand with instructions for the court to issue the writ and proceed according to the Connecticut Practice Book, which outlines habeas corpus procedure… “These elephants have been deprived of their freedom and forced to work for their whole lives,” said Elizabeth Stein, a staff attorney with the NhRP. “The law is clear that they deserve their day in court”.’ SOURCE…

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