The complaint alleges a pattern of criminal activity and abuse of non-profit status:
Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation, a co-sponsor of A.B. 44, has been accused of leaving dogs to die horribly in Asia instead of rescuing them—the group's supposed charitable mission. Its Executive Director also served time in California prison for felony kidnapping.
Direct Action Everywhere, which lobbies for A.B. 44, breaks into farms and terrorizes farmers. The group has also intimidated shoppers at Whole Foods, Chipotle, and other businesses. Its actions may well be in violation of the federal Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act. The group's activists are facing criminal charges in several states. DxE is funded by a tax-exempt charity called Friends of DxE.
PETA has given tax-exempt donations to fund the efforts of Direct Action Everywhere. PETA has also given money to the Earth Liberation Front (considered a domestic terrorist group by the FBI) and to defend an arsonist who burned down a university laboratory. PETA activists have also been arrested on numerous occasions.
Tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organizations must serve charitable purposes. The complaint alleges these activities are contradictory to IRS rules.
In addition, the federal Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act prohibits anyone from "damaging or interfering with the operations of an animal enterprise" while engaged in interstate activity—a statute DxE may have violated.
Will Coggin, managing director of the Center for Consumer Freedom, commented, "Harassing people in restaurants, deceptive fundraising, and breaking the law are not charitable activities. It's past time for authorities to crack down on this charade."
The complaint is viewable upon request. To schedule an interview, contact Michael Hall at 202-463-7112 or Hall@ConsumerFreedom.com.
Will Coggin from the Center for Consumer Freedom chatted with me about a complaint they filed. This takes it to another level a complaint is filed with the IRS and FBI targeting extremist animal rights groups.
Frankly we think it's long overdue. Some of these groups have been operating for years now and really I wouldn't even it's a gray area but a definite violation of what nonprofits should be doing. Specifically I'm talking about two groups this group called direct action everywhere. And then PETA of course you're familiar with. I'll describe real quick what our allegations are and why we think the federal government is a step in here to take some kind of action. You had this group direct action everywhere and it's kind of a network of hardcore activists based out of San Francisco and Berkeley California. This group is funded by a charity a nonprofit group registered with the federal government called Friends of direct action everywhere. Friends of DMC with their acronym. This group is collecting my taxes have donations under the guise of being a legitimate nonprofit and funding the activities of direct action everywhere. And what are these activities. Well you may be silly with people who in Utah have broken into farms and tried to steal livestock. They've done this in California Utah I believe North Carolina as well. Essentially it's a group that goes around and they terrorize farmers they break in the farms and trying to steal livestock which they call quote open rescue. They're rescuing livestock from being used for food. This group will go into restaurants like to play and sorry yelling and harassing diners there because they're eating meat. We're going to Whole Foods and start harassing people who are in the meat aisle committing crimes so it's being funded by tax exempt donations. Crazy.