Cofounder of animal rights group Direct Action Everywhere arrested at Boulder’s Whole Foods

Read the original article by John Bear at here.

Boulder police arrested two people on Tuesday afternoon accused of trying to film interviews with customers and employees at Whole Foods about eating meat.

One of the people arrested is the cofounder of Direct Action Everywhere, an animal rights group whose members have been previously arrested protesting at Whole Foods locations in Boulder.

Boulder police spokeswoman Shannon Aulabaugh said that a juvenile and Wayne Hsiung were arrested on suspicion of trespassing at the store, 2905 Pearl St., at about 2 p.m. Police did not publicly identify the juvenile.

Hsiung, 36, is a cofounder and organizer with Direct Action Everywhere, an animal rights organization.

In an email Tuesday, Hsiung said he was released from police custody. He identified the juvenile as Ateret Goldman, a Direct Action Everywhere activist who was arrested last year during a protest at a Whole Foods-affiliated business in March 2017.

Hsiung said that he and Goldman were shopping at Whole Foods on Tuesday afternoon and decided to ask a question about the store’s chicken and turkey products — he said the chain makes false claims regarding the products being cruelty free.

He added that Goldman filmed Hsiung but attempted to not film any store employees.

“We were there to ask a question,” Hsiung said. “These employees don’t have any control themselves, but they can bring it up to corporate. That’s something they can do.”

Whole Foods did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tuesday.

In March 2017, Goldman and Maximilian Knight were charged with felonies for dumping white carnations inside a meat case at Ideal Market, ruining $1,000 of meat in the process. Goldman later pleaded guilty to one count of misdemeanor tampering, Knight was referred to adult diversion and both agreed to cover the cost of the ruined meat.

Members of the group have also stated that anFBI search at Erie-based animal sanctuary Luvin’ Arms in September was related to the “rescue” of two piglets from a Utah pig farm by animal rights activists associated with Direct Action Everywhere.

A spokesman for Luvin’ Arms said the sanctuary has no official ties with Direct Action Everywhere.

The group also protested the Dalai Llama’s appearance in Boulder in June 2016.

Hsiung was scheduled to speak at the University of Colorado Boulder on Tuesday evening about protest movements in the Trump era.

A community post in the Daily Camera stated that Hsiung, who is an attorney, was expected to speak about his own confrontations with FBI and city governments.

Hsiung does not appear to have any criminal record in Colorado, but according to his group’s website, he was arrested last year in San Francisco during a protest at a live chicken market and slaughterhouse.

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