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Animal sanctuary police raid - owner to make official complaint

Marion and Mark Eaton
Marion and Mark Eaton
Police officers during last Thursday's raid
Police officers during last Thursday's raid

An animal sanctuary owner is making an official complaint against Kent Police after officers raided her home for the third time in just over a year.

In the latest swoop last Thursday, about 40 officers spent four hours searching and then removing computers and documents from the Friend Farmed Animal Rescue Centre in East Peckham, run by Marion Eaton and her husband Mark.

The joint operation by Kent and Lincolnshire Police followed a burglary at a farm near Lincoln in January when 129 white New Zealand rabbits were stolen.

It is believed some of the rabbits at the farm are bred for animal research purposes.

After the raid, Mrs Eaton said: “I will make an official complaint to the police because I haven’t kept rabbits for years.

“ I can’t really understand why they raided me for the third time in 12 months. We have farmed animals here such as cows, sheep and pigs.”

Mrs Eaton, who holds a yearly, peaceful gathering of animal rights activists at her sanctuary, said: “I don’t participate in illegal activities. There have never been any arrests at our gatherings and there has never been a complaint against us.

Kent Police raided the premises in May and September last year, and last month there was a heavy police presence outside the sanctuary when activities held their annual gathering and a police helicopter flew above the centre.

Lisa Brett, from Kent Police’s Specialist Operations and Operational Support Directorates, said she could not comment about Mrs Eaton’s complaint while the investigation was ongoing.

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