Geronimo’s owner, a fat, soft and highly divisive 8-year-old alpaca, lost her last legal effort to save him from execution on Wednesday.
A British High Court rejected Helen Macdonald’s attempt to stop the order to kill Geronimo, who agricultural authorities believe has bovine tuberculosis.
Ms. Macdonald, who believes the government’s diagnosis is the result of a false positive, said she now has until 4:30 pm Thursday to report it herself or authorities can come forward to do so at a time of their choosing.
Judge Mary Elizabeth Stacey concluded there was “no prospect” that Macdonald would be successful in his attempt to reopen an earlier ruling, according to the british press, which widely covered the audience.
Ms. Macdonald, who is a veterinary nurse, did not attend the hearing herself; she was back on the Gloucestershire farm with Geronimo, the dozens of “alpaca angels” who have sworn to protect Geronimo from execution and the many reporters who have been extensively covering legal developments related to the fight for Geronimo. But what Ms. Macdonald heard from members of her legal team who were present was consistent with “no prospects,” she said.
Still, she wasn’t ready to give up.
“I’m not going to let them downgrade it,” Macdonald said. “No way. I know he’s healthy.”
Ms. Macdonald and the tens of thousands of people who have rallied around Geronimo in recent weeks believe that the reason Geronimo tested positive for bovine TB twice is not because he is sick, but because the testing system it is faulty. Other alpaca owners and veterinarians have been skeptical of the test in the past.
The British Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, known as DEFRA, which conducts the tests, said this was not the case.
“We sympathize with the situation of Ms Macdonald, as with all the animals affected by this terrible disease,” the agency said in a post earlier this month, the agency said it was intended to discredit “misleading information” about Geronimo. “It is for this reason that the test results and options for Geronimo have been carefully considered by DEFRA, the Animal and Plant Health Agency and its veterinary experts, in addition to passing several stages of close legal scrutiny.” The agency could not be reached for comment on the latest developments.
Ms. Macdonald said her legal team’s strategy on Wednesday was to gain access to data from a court review that she believes shows nine camelids – the term for thin-necked animals, including alpacas, llamas, and camels – were found. tested positive for bovine tuberculosis. be perfectly healthy after being slaughtered. The judge denied him access to that “evidence,” he said, and has been told that he cannot appeal the decision.
More than 27,000 cattle in England were slaughtered in the last year to contain bovine tuberculosis, according to DEFRA.
UK Veterinary Director Christine Middlemiss has said taking positive tests seriously is critical to “eradicating the biggest threat to animal health in this country”.
The judge’s ruling “doesn’t change anything,” says Macdonald. wrote Wednesday on the Facebook page Save Geronimo. “We are still struggling!”