Delta Airlines Need Not Transport Rhino Trophy

Discussion in 'News & Announcements' started by Bullet Safaris, Jun 20, 2016.

  1. Bullet Safaris

    Bullet Safaris SPONSOR Since 2015 AH Enthusiast

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    Delta Airlines Need Not Transport Rhino Trophy
    By DAVID LEE
    SOURCE: http://www.courthousenews.com/2016/06/08/delta-airlines-need-not-transport-rhino-trophy.htm
    black-rhino-fws-richard-ruggiero.jpg
    DALLAS (CN) - A Texan who paid $350,000 to kill an endangered black rhino in Africa cannot sue Delta Airlines for refusing to ship his trophy home because it can ship whatever it chooses, so long as it applies to all passengers equally, a federal judge ruled.
    U.S. District Judge Barbara M.G. Lynn said plaintiffs Corey Knowlton, Dallas Safari Club, et al. "misappl[y] the equal protection" common law principle that allows common carriers to refuse to ship items.
    "Delta's policy bans its shipment of Big Five trophies. Obviously, it does not ban the hunting of Big Five game," the 20-page opinion states. "Such hunters are free to ship allowed cargo with Delta, including trophies of other game. Although, because Plaintiffs are hunters or other parties who benefit from the hunting of the Big Five, Delta's ban negatively affects them, that impact does not mean Delta's decision is unlawful or actionable."
    Big Five trophies are the African lion, African elephant, African leopard, Cape buffalo and the white or black rhinoceros.
    Knowlton made headlines in January 2014 when the Dallas Safari Club accepted his bid for a hunt and Namibia's Ministry of Environment and Tourism issued him a permit to kill the rhino. Despite criticism from animal rights groups and several death threats, Knowlton killed the rhino four months later.
    Knowlton sued Delta in October 2015, a year after Delta enacted the Big Five ban in response to public outcry over Minnesota dentist Walter Palmer's killing a beloved lion named Cecil in Zimbabwe.
    Knowlton accused Delta of robbing "wildlife habitat of its economic value, encouraging habitat conversion to agriculture, grazing, and industry, and undercutting range states' tried-and-true conservation strategy."
    He claimed the ban "jeopardizes the benefits of tourist hunting and its centrality to conservation" in Africa.
    Delta sought dismissal in January, calling it an "absurdity" for the plaintiffs to claim it must carry Big Five trophies if it carries other trophies.
    "If it were true, an airline that accepted hunting shotguns as checked baggage would also have to accept AK-47s and grenade launchers," Delta's dismissal motion stated. "Not surprisingly, the case law rejects this position."
    Lynn dismissed the claim of tortious interference Monday.
    "Although plaintiffs correctly conclude that claims arising out of defamatory conduct would not usually relate to an airline's service, plaintiffs' tortious interference claim in this case does relate to Delta's services," the opinion states. "There is, in fact, no defamatory statement alleged. Delta merely altered the scope of its services by refusing to transport a designated kind of commodity - Big Five trophies. It never said the hunting or transport of such species was unlawful."
    Lynn dismissed the case in its entirety.
    Knowlton's attorneys did not respond to an email message requesting comment late Tuesday evening. Delta spokesman Brian Kruse declined to comment on the dismissal Wednesday morning.
    The other plaintiffs were the Houston Safari Club, Conservation Force, the Campfire Association and the Tanzania Hunting Operators Association.
     

  2. CAustin

    CAustin AH ENABLER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Ambassador

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    I didn't think he would get anywhere with his case but good for him! He tried!
     
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  3. edward

    edward GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    THATS BULL SHIT,WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?
     

  4. Hank2211

    Hank2211 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    The only reason Delta - and others - have done this is because they believe there is more money in refusing big 5 trophies than in carrying them. All we can do is try to show them they are wrong.

    I am trying to get a scimitar oryx home from two years ago. Everything else came, no problem. But no airline will take a CITES animal, it seems. Except one. I'm told El Al will do it. Good for them.

    Funny thing - if you can call it that - is that my trophy is accompanied by an export permit from RSA, an import permit from Canada and a permit from CITES in Geneva. Does it get more legal than that? But they won't take it, saying they don't want to contribute to poaching!
     

  5. Bert the Turtle

    Bert the Turtle AH Fanatic

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    A ship takes longer but it costs less. If I had the time, I'd take a ship for myself when I go to Africa. The airlines aren't what they used to be. Back in the days when air travel was a luxury, they catered to the customer. Now that it is a commodity, service sucks, the seats suck, reliability sucks. I'm more than happy not to give them my money for trophy transport.
     

  6. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Agreed with your sentiments @Hank2211

    And this is pretty much describing insanity, ignorance, and caving to what they consider the majority of public opinion, very sad!
     

  7. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    I hope they appeal this ruling. Being a common carrier means you can't discriminate unjustly in what or who you transport.
    Regards,
    Philip
     

  8. edward

    edward GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    how does refusing business equate to more money?the antis have them by the balls,how?
     

  9. ve7poi

    ve7poi AH Enthusiast

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    Try Cargolux out of joberg just received mine a month ago with two cities
    Permitted trophies
     

  10. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Don't forget that old saying. "we reserve the right to refuse service to anyone". Whether we like it or not its their right to refuse, as they had set a policy of no Big 5 trophies. We may not agree with it but oh well.
     

  11. edward

    edward GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    oh well aint going to get the trophies home.
     

  12. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    No but some other carrier will have to be employed right? Delta aint gonna do it. One can argue with Delta till the cows come home or move on. So that's the 'oh well', move on and get someone else to do it.
     

  13. edward

    edward GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    last i heard every body else was also refusing,so,oh well aint coming up with any names.
     

  14. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    :A Banana:Well all I can tell you is....oh well! I find it a little difficult to get too worked up about a guy who spent 350K on a rhino hunt and cant get a carrier lined up? If he can spend that kind of dough on a hunt he can figure out how to get it home. Put it on a ship for crying out loud!
     

  15. Lee M

    Lee M AH Fanatic

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    Careful not to dismiss this just because the impacted person has money. You may feel different if your plains games trophies were treated similar.
     
    Big5 and edward like this.

  16. Pheroze

    Pheroze AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    I assumed he took on Delta to make a point for hunters.
     

  17. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Not really being dismissive, but the reality is he can apparently afford to do whatever is necessary to get his rhino home, with or without Delta. As to the rest, of course we all want to get our stuff home regardless what it is. In the future we may all have to find alternate means to do so, would not surprise me. But these are private companies and can do what they want to, even if we don't like it. That's the reality here.
     

  18. edward

    edward GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    his trophies today,yours tomorrow,mine the next day and everybodys the day after.i seem to remember the ship by sea group got on the no shipping trophies band wagon, did that ever change?
     

  19. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Yeah, I get all that, no really I do. My point is, what is to be done about it? These companies can do whatever they want to. I don't believe that every freight shipper in the world is going down this path.
     

  20. johnnyblues

    johnnyblues AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    I too hear Cargolux will happily transport trophies. Good question for Robert from SSI
     

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