A German laboratory is under investigation after video footage revealed animal suffering, according to Cruelty Free International.
The organization, working with SOKO Tierschutz, filmed multiple incidences of extreme suffering, including 'monkeys restrained in barbaric devices' and 'dogs left to suffer when it was clear that they were very ill and even dying' at Laboratory of Pharmacology and Toxicology (LPT) in Germany.
LPT, a family-owned contract-testing laboratory, carries out toxicity testing for global pharmaceutical, industrial and agrochemical companies. This includes poisoning animals to see how much of a chemical or drug it takes to cause serious harm, in an attempt to measure what a 'safe' dose for humans might be.
Now, according to Cruelty Free International, its footage has led to the local public prosecutor's office opening 'a preliminary investigation for animal cruelty against LPT'.
In addition, 'the Lower Saxony Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety (LAVES) - the responsible local authority - has filed criminal charges too', and the local veterinary authority is also taking action against LPT for the size of the cages in which 44 of the monkeys were kept.
While the organization says that it and SOKO Tierschutz are pleased that the joint investigation has prompted some action on the part of the authorities, they have branded the action 'too little too late'.
'Doesn't go far enough'
"This initial response is of course welcome, but we do not believe that it goes far enough to protect the animals at this laboratory and others," Cruelty Free Internationals' Director of Science, Dr. Katy Taylor, said.
"Our evidence show cruelty and breaches of law that we believe mean that LPT should immediately lose its authorization to carry out animal tests and the facility should be closed down.
"We also believe that as a priority, an independent investigation should be set up to ensure that similar failings at other animal laboratories in Lower Saxony and Germany as a whole are rooted out as soon as possible.
"It is imperative that findings from our investigation are not dismissed as an isolated incident. This is the real face of toxicity testing on animals throughout Europe and beyond. The EU prides itself on its standards of animal protection. If this is the case, then the new Commission should immediately establish an urgent and comprehensive review of animals used in regulatory toxicology testing."
LPT has not yet responded to PBN's request for comment.
Cruelty Free International has launched a petition calling on the European Commission for an urgent and fundamental review of animal testing in Europe. You can find out more here