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For Immediate Release: 02/12/14

Born Free USA CEO to Speak at DC Independent Film Festival

Wildlife trafficking expert Adam Roberts to speak out about wildlife crime documentary

Washington, D.C. -- Adam Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA, a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation, has been invited to join a panel at the upcoming D.C. Independent Film Festival (DCIFF). The event will take place on Sunday, February 23, immediately following the screening of the east coast premiere of the powerful film Ofir - A Wildlife Crime Documentary. The screening is at 12:15pm at the U.S. Naval Heritage Center and runs 58 minutes. The panel discussion is from 1:30pm to 2:15pm. Tickets are $12 in advance or are available at the door.

“I have worked with Ofir for years and I am not sure there is a more indefatigable warrior fighting against the wildlife trade anywhere,” Roberts said. “Ofir is an innovative and dedicated wildlife champion and a hero to us all.”

Roberts joins documentary filmmaker Mark McDannald of Kublacom Pictures and Johan Bergenas, Deputy Director of Managing Across Boundaries, The Stimson Center, who are also on the panel.

About the film: When Ofir Drori discovered that no one was fighting to disprove Jane Goodall’s dark prophecy that apes in the wild would soon be extinct, he decided that he was the man for the job. In 2002, he ventured out to follow up on predicted ape extinction, and the combat of those sweating blood to save and protect the endangered species. He instead found an empty battlefield. Disappointed and disgruntled, he vowed to make a difference on his own. It began with saving Future, an orphaned young chimpanzee fated to fall victim to an illegal trade by poachers in a remote Cameroonian town. When the authorities failed to act, Drori took it upon himself to become the savior of Future, and of wildlife in general. The Last Great Ape Organization (LAGA) was then born: the NGO to start enforcing wildlife laws that were already on the books but had never been applied.

Born Free USA is a nationally recognized leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation, and public education, Born Free USA leads vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic “pets,” trapping and fur, and the destructive international wildlife trade. Born Free USA brings to North America the message of “compassionate conservation” — the vision of the United Kingdom-based Born Free Foundation, established in 1984 by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna, stars of the iconic film Born Free, along with their son, Will Travers. Born Free USA’s mission is to end suffering of wild animals in captivity, conserve threatened and endangered species, and encourage compassionate conservation globally. More at www.bornfreeusa.org, www.twitter.com/bornfreeusa, and www.facebook.com/bornfreeusa.

Media contact: Rodi Rosensweig, publicrelations@bornfreeusa.org, (203) 270-8929.

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