Animal Rights Activist Released from Custody


A woman detained by federal authorities for refusing to testify before a grand jury considering a University of Iowa animal lab break-in was released from custody Thursday. Carrie Feldman, 20, was ordered held by federal Judge John Jarvey after she refused to testify before the Davenport-based grand jury in November. Her attorney, Jordan Kushner, said the order to release Feldman stated her testimony is no longer necessary. "I don't know of any reason for her to have any more involvement in the future," he said.

Feldman's release comes three days after FBI agents raided a home in Salt Lake City, Utah. One of the targets of the warrant was Peter Young, an animal rights activist who served time in federal prison for fur-farm raids in the 1990s, documents show. His name had been mentioned previously in connection with the case.
The U.S. Attorney in Davenport is prosecuting the case. Spokesman Mike Bladel declined comment. Neither Feldman nor Young could be reached for comment.
Feldman, of Minneapolis, was ordered held in connection with an investigation into an Animal Liberation Front, or ALF, action at the University of Iowa in 2004 that caused hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage. University officials are now building an animal research facility underground, citing security concerns. The action was designated as a domestic act of terrorism.

Scott DeMuth, Feldman's former boyfriend, also was ordered detained for refusing to testify before the grand jury. He was then indicted in connection with the case. He is out on bond while awaiting trial. Officials had previously said he was associated with Young. Hearings for Feldman and DeMuth often draw a crowd of activists to the Davenport federal courthouse.

The warrant to search the Utah house was signed by Davenport-based U.S. Magistrate Thomas Shields on Saturday morning. Posted online at, it ordered the confiscation of computers, camera equipment and other materials "which potentially relate to Peter Young and his physical location, travels, friends and associates" as well as his activities in connection with "animal enterprise terrorism." It also seeks records having to do with the same. The search warrant also names Justin Samuel, a former associate of Young's. One of the items taken, according to a blog post at, was a postcard of the Iowa 80 Truckstop in Walcott.

"At least 15 computers were taken by the FBI, along with boxes of documents, notebooks, files, and address books," the blog says. "The house is well-known in the area as a gathering space for animal rights and other activists. No arrests have been made, and at this point it seems Iowa is being used as a pretext for a continued campaign of harassment and intimidation."

Young and Samuel were charged in connection with the fur-farm raids. Young was released from prison in 2007, after two years behind bars. "Emerging from a grand jury indictment, 7 years of being wanted by the FBI, a federal prison sentence, and nearly 15 years in the animal liberation movement; today Peter is a frequent lecturer at universities and events, writer on liberation movements, and unapologetic supporter of those who work outside the law to achieve human, earth, and animal liberation," his blog says.

By Ann McGlynn Sioux City Journal

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An Insider's View of the Growth of the Animal Liberation Movement

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