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  1. #1
    Senior Member zeezil's Avatar
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    Case focuses on African immigrants' use of monkey meat

    Who knew! Just a weird, strange story:


    Case focuses on African immigrants' use of monkey meat

    NEW YORK (AP) -- From her baptism in Liberia to Christmas years later in her adopted New York City, Mamie Manneh never lost the longing to celebrate religious rituals by eating monkey meat.


    Family members sit with a portrait of Mamie Manneh at their home in Staten Island, New York.


    Zangar Jefferson, center, husband of Mamie Manneh, sits with their children in their home.

    Now, the tribal customs of Manneh and other West African immigrants have become the focus of an unusual criminal case charging her with meat smuggling, and touching on issues of religious freedom, infectious diseases and wildlife preservation.

    The case "appears to be the first of its kind relating to that uniquely African product," defense attorney Jan Rostal wrote in a pending motion to dismiss. "Unfortunately, it represents the sort of clash of cultural and religious values inherent in the melting pot that is America."

    At the center of the case in federal court is a modest woman with nine children and a history of domestic discord.

    The case dates to early 2006, when federal inspectors at JFK Airport examined a shipment of 12 cardboard boxes from Guinea.

    They were addressed to Manneh and, according to a flight manifest, contained African dresses and smoked fish with a value of $780.

    Instead, stashed underneath the smoked fish, the inspectors found what West Africans refer to as bushmeat: "skulls, limbs and torsos of nonhuman primate species" plus the hoof and leg of a small antelope, according to court papers.

    Three days later, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agents were at Manneh's door, where she told them she ran a smoked fish importing business.

    According to the agents, she initially denied ordering any bushmeat from Africa or ever eating it while in the United States.

    But after she consented to a search, the agents came across a tiny, hairy arm hidden in her garage.

    "Monkey," she explained, claiming the arm was sent to her out of the blue "as a gift from God in heaven."

    Federal prosecutors hit Manneh with smuggling charges that accused her of violating import procedures and suggested she was a menace to man and beast alike.

    A criminal complaint cited evidence that the illegal importation of bushmeat encourages the slaughter of protected wild animals.

    More ominously, the complaint warned of "the potential health risks to humans linking bushmeat to diseases like Lassa fever, Ebola, HIV, SARS and monkeypox."

    Defense attorney Rostal has countered by accusing the government of picking on a poorly educated immigrant.

    Her client's only offense, she said, was her inability to grasp Western attitudes and highly technical regulations regarding bushmeat.

    Defense papers also argue that the U.S. demand for the meat involved in the Manneh case -- from Africa's green monkey population -- is "too small to have any significance for conservation."

    Manneh, 39, testified last year that before arriving in the United States more than 25 years ago, monkey meat was critical to her religious upbringing.

    At age 7, "I was baptized and they used that for the baptizing ceremony," she told a judge.

    Manneh is already serving a two-year sentence in state prison for trying to run over a woman she suspected of sleeping with her husband, Zangar Jefferson. If convicted of the federal charges she faces up to five more years in prison and deportation.

    "The government's taking a woman away from her children," complained Jefferson, who's struggling to raise the children alone. "It's very depressing, especially with the holidays right around the corner."

    The prosecution also has dampened spirits at the church in Staten Island where Manneh and other African immigrants once packed the pews to practice a religion blending Christianity and tribal customs.

    One of the few worshippers left, Leona Artis, says the congregation's appetite for monkey meat is deeply misunderstood.

    Take Thanksgiving.

    "Where some people have turkey, we'll have monkey meat," Artis said. "I've been eating it all my life. It's delicious."

    Baptisms, Easter, Christmas, weddings -- all are occasions for eating monkey, Manneh's supporters said in a sworn statement filed with the court.

    The statement was vague about how the meat is obtained, but explains that it always arrives dried and smoked. Once blessed by a pastor, "we usually prepare it by cooking it for several hours into a stew," they said.

    For them, the exotic import is more than just food.

    "We eat bushmeat," they said, "for our souls."
    http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/law/11/25/mo ... ef=24hours
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  2. #2
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    Does it taste like chicken?
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  3. #3
    Senior Member butterbean's Avatar
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    Take Thanksgiving.

    "Where some people have turkey, we'll have monkey meat," Artis said. "I've been eating it all my life. It's delicious."
    EWWW!

    I don't know whether I should laugh or roll my eyes in disgust. I'm not really shocked. I think I am becoming immuned to hearing, IMO, outrageous customs of other societies.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member zeezil's Avatar
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    A Taste of Baboon and Monkey Meat, and Maybe of Prison, Too
    By ELLEN BARRY


    Mamie Manneh’s husband, Zangar, with some of their children on Staten Island. Ms. Manneh is in jail on an assault conviction.

    It takes strategic thinking to find monkey meat in New York. Best to avoid the word “monkey,
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  5. #5
    Senior Member IndianaJones's Avatar
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    Pandora's Box.
    We are NOT a nation of immigrants!

  6. #6
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    mmmm monkey

    Monkey
    Monkey bushmeat is commonly consumed in tropical Africa. Monkey meat is prepared fresh in rural areas. It is also smoked to preserve it and allow it to be sent to market in the cities. A common sight along rural roads is smoked whole monkeys for sale, tales tied to heads to make carrying handles. Fresh monkey meat is often cooked in a Tomato Sauce made from tomatoes, chile peppers, and onions. Smoked monkey meat can be prepared in a Tomato-Peanut sauce: Soak the smoked meat in water, then rinse and drain it. Fry tomatoes, onions, chile pepper, in hot palm oil. Add tomato paste and the monkey meat. Simmer until all is tender. Season with salt and pepper.



    http://www.congocookbook.com/other_recipes/monkey.html
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  7. #7
    Senior Member CitizenJustice's Avatar
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    This is a totally unacceptable practice which endangers our citizens. The diseases possible, added to the TB, Chigas, etc, brought in by ILLEGAL ALIENS???????????

    What's next?

  8. #8
    Senior Member Reciprocity's Avatar
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    Christ Almighty!... pack these savages up and send them back, they don't belong here, end of story
    In questions of powerlet no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution. Thomas Jefferson

  9. #9
    Senior Member zeezil's Avatar
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    Take Thanksgiving.

    "Where some people have turkey, we'll have monkey meat," Artis said. "I've been eating it all my life. It's delicious."

    Baptisms, Easter, Christmas, weddings -- all are occasions for eating monkey, Manneh's supporters said in a sworn statement filed with the court.

    The statement was vague about how the meat is obtained, but explains that it always arrives dried and smoked. Once blessed by a pastor, "we usually prepare it by cooking it for several hours into a stew," they said.

    For them, the exotic import is more than just food.

    "We eat bushmeat," they said, "for our souls."
    Very, very bizarre.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member IndianaJones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CitizenJustice
    This is a totally unacceptable practice which endangers our citizens. The diseases possible, added to the TB, Chigas, etc, brought in by ILLEGAL ALIENS???????????

    What's next?
    Cannibalism?
    We are NOT a nation of immigrants!

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