Hampshire man admits animal rights linked criminal damage

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An animal rights activist has admitted his role in a terror campaign targeting businesses supporting an animal testing lab.

Thomas Harris, 29, changed his plea to guilty on a charge of conspiracy to cause criminal damage ahead of a trial at Winchester Crown Court.

Harris, formerly of Clarence Road in Gosport, admitted his role in planning attacks on four branches of Barclays Bank, including Park Gate and Bishop's Waltham in September 2008.

A van belonging to a Fedex employee in Wickham and a car attacked in a case of mistaken identity were also covered by the plea.

All the targets were believed by activists to be connected to Huntingdon Life Scienced (HLS) in Cambridgeshire and were part of a wider campaign to close the labs.

The Crown is allowing a similar charge against Harris' girlfriend, Nicola Tapping, 27, to lay on the file and will now not be pursued.

Harris will be sentenced next Thursday.