- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 1, 2014

CHICAGO (AP) - A defense lawyer in a case of two animal rights activists accused of releasing 2,000 minks on an Illinois farm says he’ll challenge the constitutionality of the federal Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act under which they’re charged.

When lawyer Michael Deutsch told Judge Milton Shadur the statute’s name at a Wednesday hearing in Chicago, Shadur laughed and said, “Really?”

Deutsch said later Wednesday the statute is overly broad and that the use of “terrorism” in its title could prejudice jurors.

Tyler Lang and Kevin Johnson allegedly freed the minks at a Morris farm last year, spray-painting “Liberation is Love” on a barn.

The California men pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and intrastate travel to damage and interfere with an animal enterprise. If convicted, they face up to 10 years in prison.


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