"At the beginning of the Band of Mercy and the Animal Liberation Front, someone liberated that first animal and struck that first match. And it was Ronnie Lee.
Born in 1951, Ronnie would become interested in veganism and the world of animal rights by seeing a TV program in the early 70’s about the Hunt Saboteurs Association. He would soon join, and launch his own chapter, sometimes sabbing by himself.
But he realized that if you could keep the hunt from leaving in the morning by sabotaging their equipment and vehicles, you wouldn’t even need to be in the fields. So in 1972 the Band of Mercy was born. Starting out with low level attacks on hunt vehicles and kennels, he and his friends turned it into a crusade against all animal use. By 1976, they had become the Animal Liberation Front, and as they say, the rest was history."
RONNIE LEE (part one) - "And then we had heard about a vivisection laboratory that was being built and we used to go hunt sabbing in that area. “Oh blimey! That’s quite a lot of it there now…” We happen to have a gallon of petrol, of gasoline in the – in our car. So we thought “Well, why don’t we have a go now?” Y’know? So we sloshed it around in the annex, and threw a couple matches down, and it went up – woosh! And we made our getaway!"
RONNIE LEE (part two) - "I was arrested in ’86, and charged with conspiracy – charged with conspiracy to cause arson, to cause criminal damage and to incite other people to cause criminal damage. I didn’t do the damage myself, what I did was encouraged other people to do it. They said “oh, we suspect that Mr. Lee dabbled himself in this action,” which I did, a lot! But they couldn’t prove it!"