Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Court Could Decide If Chimpanzees Are Legal Persons

By Megan Gannon, News Editor | October 07, 2014 07:25am ET

The case of Tommy the pet chimpanzee goes back to court this week, and a group of judges could decide whether he should be recognized as a "person" under the law.

The organization advocating for Tommy will appeal a 2013 decision that denied the captive ape a writ of habeas corpus in New York. 

A writ of habeas corpus is intended to protect people from unlawful detention. Last December, the Nonhuman Rights Project asked the state Supreme Court for a writ of habeas corpus on behalf of Tommy, a caged chimpanzee in Gloversville, New York. Tommy, the organization argued, was being held against his will in solitary confinement and should be released into a sanctuary that closely mimics a natural environment.

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