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When WSPA asked supporters to email words of encouragement to the Public Environmental Prosecutor of Belém, Brazil, acknowledging his ongoing efforts to prevent the cruelty of long distance transportation, over 33,000 of you did.
The prosecutor, Dr Benedito Wilson Sá, was the responsible for the suspension of live cattle exports from the port of Belém about a year ago.
Back then, he successfully argued that live export seriously compromises animal welfare as well as damaging the local economy by exporting jobs and taxes.
He also pointed out the damage that corralling large numbers of animals together causes to environment, ultimately taking its toll on tourism.
But Dr Sá’s call for a total ban on live cattle exports faced significant opposition from the powerful local live transport industry. WSPA, a member of the Handle with Care coalition, asked supporters to show him that people across the world believed in his action.
Ingrid Eder and Sofia Parente of WSPA present Dr Sá with WSPA's certificate of appreciation
Your many thousands of letters, praising his efforts for animals, were copied to Domingos Juvenil, President of the State Assembly of Pará, and to Ana Júlia Carepa, Governor of Pará, showing all three that the world cares about the conditions and welfare of cattle.
The cattle exported from Belém were subjected to extreme temperatures and the dangers of overcrowding for days at a time. A proportion of would die before they even reached their destination. The chilled and frozen food trade means this isn’t only cruel – it is unnecessary.
Those that survive the horrific land and sea journey were not guaranteed a humane death.
Dr Sá’s struggle struck a chord across the world – letters came from Italy, the Netherlands, the UK and USA as well as Brazil itself. Since then, he has been successful in defending the suspension from the appeals and a permanent ban is now in place.
In February WSPA staff congratulated him with a certificate of achievement and our sincere thanks.
We also wish to thank all of you who took the action.
WSPA hopes that the Belém ban will convince the Pará state authorities to close live animal exports from the State for good, replacing it with a chilled meat trade that will also benefit the local economy.