Sea World Lawsuit-Judge Says No Standing

http://tinyurl.com/haw4zsm  (ABA Journal story)

A federal judge in San Diego has dismissed three combined lawsuits that contended SeaWorld visitors are wrongly lured to the parks as a result of false claims that its orca whales are  ‘well-treated.’ (emphasis added by PD)

Note: since this lawsuit was tossed, SeaWorld has now agreed with HSUS not to use the Orca whale show or raise Orcas–or something close, to save the business from the relentless PROTESTERS outside the business (obviously ruining the business)..

U.S. District Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo dismissed the suit last week, report theLos Angeles Times, the Associated Press, the Orlando Sentinel, the Tampa Bay Times and the Times of San Diego. The plaintiffs had alleged deceit and violation of state laws governing unfair and deceptive trade practices, false advertising and consumer protection.

Bencivengo said the plaintiffs had failed to allege the plaintiffs ever relied on misstatements or false advertising by SeaWorld about the whales before buying their tickets. As a result, the plaintiffs lacked standing, Bencivengo said. Her Dec. 23 decision (PDF) allows the plaintiffs to file an amended complaint that includes such specifics.

The plaintiffs also alleged SeaWorld had failed to disclose information about the whales’ health, but the company had no duty to disclose such information, Bencivengo wrote.

A holding to the contrary “would effectively require any company selling any product or service to affirmatively disclose every conceivable piece of information about that product or service (or even about the company generally) because inevitably some customer would find such information relevant to his or her purchase,” Bencivengo said.

“That the whales themselves do not have standing to contest their conditions of captivity does not change the analysis or give plaintiffs any more standing to assert omission claims than they would have to sue SeaWorld for omitting information about SeaWorld’s treatment or compensation of its human employees,” Bencivengo wrote.

The suits were filed by five SeaWorld visitors on behalf of those who went to the parks in San Antonio, San Diego and Orlando, Florida.

SeaWorld spokesman David Koontz told the Los Angeles Times the suits were part of an effort to eliminate zoos and aquariums. But “SeaWorld and other science-based organizations are part of the solution, not the problem,” he said. “Orcas at SeaWorld are healthy and thriving.”

“SeaWorld welcomes this significant decision, which threw out all of the plaintiffs’ claims, and which could signal the ultimate end of this litigation,” Koontz said.

The case is Hall v. Sea World Entertainment Inc.

PD note: Yeah, this is like the PETA case of cows being happy.  Yeah, yeah, yeah, the suits were filed by “visitors” to Seaworld.

We all know what that means, same thing as when HSUS files lawsuits concerning the stunning of chickens, the buyers of puppies at Petland stores, and the same ole, same ole story. Pretty much the same  as the Ringling Brothers Circus, which is phasing out elephants performing.

In that case, which lasted like 14 years, an alleged elephant trainer was PAID by the ARs to say he had a special bond with the elephants, then he was not even able to I.D. such elephants…..and civil RACKETEERING charges were filed by Ringling, against the AR groups involved; notably, HSUS and ASPCA paid some significant money (MILLIONS) to avoid TRIAL. Guess it’s cheaper to lose millions in one year,  than lose ALL donations and ALL credibility for eternity????

Remarkably, it’s easy to understand how the general public is easily fooled when it comes to animals. An attorney we know decided to become vegan and actually turned AR because he claimed to have done his research. We already know he’s kind of unusual and kinky for reasons we can’t state, but anyway, he thinks he knows it all because he reads what HSUS puts out there. Well if an attorney is stupid enough to believe HSUS, it’s not a farfetched belief for HSUS to convince other professionals, right?

It is a fact that many JUDGES and attorneys know little and nothing about animal law. That is because animal law will or may encompass civil, criminal,  possibly tort law, property law, negligence, search/seizure, animal enterprises, terrorism, misrepresentation, malfeasance, federal crimes (racketeering), civil rights, governmental tort claims, private attorney general claims, exhausting administrative remedies,  and a host of other subjects which become caught up in the case such as receivership, animal rescues, merchantibility, sales, consumer protection, due process, illegal protests, and tons more. and you thought animal law was simple. Like HSUS tells people and Chipotle.  Yeah……………right.

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