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Titlesort ascending Citation Alternate Citation Summary Type
United States v. Mitchell 553 F.2d 996 (1977)

This appeal turns on whether the Marine Mammal Protection Act ("MMPA"), and related regulations, apply to an American citizen taking dolphins within the territorial waters of a foreign sovereign state. The defendant-appellant, Jerry Mitchell, is an American citizen convicted of violating the Act by capturing 21 dolphins within the three-mile limit of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. The court held that the criminal prohibitions of the MMPA do not reach conduct in the territorial waters of a foreign sovereignty and reversed the conviction.

Case
U.S. v. Hayashi 22 F.3d 859 (1993)

Appellant challenged the decision of the United States District Court for the District of Hawaii, which convicted him of taking a marine mammal in violation of the MMPA.  The court reversed appellant's conviction for taking a marine mammal under the MMPA.  It held that the MMPA and the regulations implementing the act did not make it a crime to take reasonable steps to deter porpoises from eating fish or bait off a fisherman's line. 

Case
Strong v. United States 5 F.3d 905 (1993)

The appeal in this case does not contest the denial of a permit to conduct dolphin feedings cruises. The position of the plaintiffs-appellees is that the Secretary of Commerce has no authority to consider feeding to be a form of harassment or to regulate it. The court disagreed with the plaintiffs-appellees and found it clearly reasonable to restrict or prohibit the feeding of dolphins as a potential hazard to them.

Case
State v. LeVasseur 613 P.2d 1328 (1980)

The trial court convicted defendant of first degree theft after he freed dolphins from a university laboratory. The court affirmed the conviction on appeal. It reasoned that the choice of evils defense was unavailable to defendant because the definition of "another" under Hawaii statute clearly did not include dolphins.

Case
Progressive Animal Welfare Society v. Department of Navy 725 F. Supp. 475 (1989)

The Progressive Animal Welfare Shelter ("PAWS") and fourteen other environmental and animal rights groups brought this action for a preliminary injunction against the Navy's plan to "deploy" Atlantic bottlenose dolphins at the Bangor submarine base.

Case
Marine Wonderland & Animal Welfare Park, Ltd., v. Kreps 610 F.2d 947 (1979) 198 U.S. App. D.C. 5 (1979)

The facts of this case deal with an Canadian amusement park that had dolphins in its possession en route to Canada when it was forced to land  in the United States.  In this case, the court found that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ("NOAA"), which is the agency charged with the administration of the MMPA, must be accorded first opportunity to interpret the meaning of "importation."  The NOAA, as fact-finder and record-builder, is best suited to determine legal and factual determinations. 

Case
Marine Mammal Conservancy, Inc. v. Department of Agr. 134 F.3d 409 (D.C. Cir. 1998) 328 U.S.App.D.C. 253, 28 Envtl. L. Rep. 20,538

A nonprofit organization petitioned for review of the order of administrative law judge (ALJ) which denied organization's motion to intervene in administrative proceedings under Animal Welfare Act. The Court of Appeals held that the organization's failure to appeal administrative denial to judicial officer precluded judicial review of ALJ's actions.

Case
Kokechik Fishermen's Association v. Secretary of Commerce 839 F.2d 795 (1988) 268 U.S. App. D.C. 116 (1988)

The Secretary of Commerce issued a regulation authorizing appellant salmon federation to take a fixed number of porpoise in connection to commercial fishing for salmon.  Appellee commercial fishermen opposed the permit.  The federation sought review of a judgment which preliminarily enjoined the Secretary from issuing the permit.

Case
In the Matters of: Kyle C. Mueller, et al 1991 WL 288705 (N.O.A.A.) 6 O.R.W. 345 (1991)

The question in this case was whether respondents, members of a marine mammal conservation group, violated the MMPA by interfering with the authorized capture of six dolphins.  As result of this case, which was a civil penalty proceeding, only one of the respondents was found guilty of taking under the MMPA. The court found that the respondent's actions, although taken with noble intentions, endangered the lives of the dolphins, was improper, and dangerous.  He was assessed a fine in the amount of $2,000.

Case
In the Matter of: Thomas E. Rainelli 1999 NOAA LEXIS 10 1999 NOAA LEXIS 10

This case involves violations of the MMPA by taking, in the form of harassment by feeding or attempting to feed wild dolphins.  The respondents, a captain of a vessel used in a dolphin-feeding encounter, and the sole shareholder of a boat renal company, were both found guilty and assessed civil penalties in the amount of $4500.  Though the shareholder was not on the vessel when it committed the feeding violations, he was found guilty of violating the MMPA, by providing a platform from which feeding is conducted or supported. 

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