Self-confessed ALF bomber Donald Currie
If you run a corporation in the UK, you need to register your personal information with something called Company House. But in the last year, under pressure from lobbyists, the UK government changed the laws, making it easier for company directors to keep their information classified.
The supposed reason is fear of animal rights extremists, who will look you up in the directory and proceed to go bomb your house and car and disinter your relatives.
There’s been a huge spike, with 10,447 people (three times as many as a year ago) on the “secret list.” Are there really that many companies engaged in vivisection?
While there are a few truly violent AR activists (such as Donald Currie), there’s good reason to think that many of these directors are just using the threat of violence as a convenient excuse to generally hide from public accountability.
Says Alison Tuffrey-Jones of Animal Rights International:
It begs the question if people are doing this whether they are doing it for the right reasons. It could lead to very convenient invisibility of company directors. That’s the danger. It’s really an excuse. When you talk about animal rights activists or extremists it’s really only about 20 people in the country.