Taken from http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/05/18/domestic.terrorism/index.html
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FBI, ATF address domestic terrorism
Officials: Extremists pose serious threat
From Terry Frieden
Wednesday, May 18, 2005 Posted: 10:24 PM EDT (0224 GMT)
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Violent animal rights extremists and eco-terrorists now pose one of the most serious terrorism threats to the nation, top federal law enforcement officials said Wednesday.
Senior officials from the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms (ATF) and Explosives told a Senate panel of their growing concern over these groups.
Of particular concern are the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) and the Earth Liberation Front (ELF).
John Lewis, the FBI's deputy assistant director for counterterrorism, said animal and environmental rights extremists have claimed credit for more than 1,200 criminal incidents since 1990. The FBI has 150 pending investigations associated with animal rights or eco-terrorist activities, and ATF officials say they have opened 58 investigations in the past six years related to violence attributed to the ELF and ALF.
Inhofe alleges PETA link
Senate Environment Committee Chairman James Inhofe estimated the cost of damages from militant environmental and animal rights supporters at more than $110 million in the past decade.
"Just like al Qaeda or any other terrorist movement, ELF and ALF cannot accomplish their goals without money, membership, and the media," the Republican senator from Oklahoma said.
Inhofe said there was "a growing network of support for extremists like ELF and ALF," and he singled out People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals for giving money to members of both groups.
PETA claims more than 800,000 members. Its president, Ingrid Newkirk, declined to appear at the hearing, but general counsel Jeffrey Kerr denied Inhofe's allegation in a written statement.
"PETA has no involvement with alleged ALF or ELF actions. PETA does not support terrorism. PETA does not support violence," Kerr said.
"In fact PETA exists to fight the terrorism and violence inflicted on billions of animals annually in the meat, dairy, experimentation, tobacco, fur, leather, and circus industries."