Owner of pet monkey found at Toronto Ikea plans rally in effort to get him back

TORONTO – A woman whose pet monkey was found wearing a shearling coat in a Toronto Ikea parking lot is planning a demonstration today as part of her efforts to get him back.

Yasmin Nakhuda is set to protest outside the offices of Toronto Animal Services this afternoon, a day before she is due in court to fight for the Japanese macaque named Darwin.

The young monkey captured worldwide attention earlier this month when he was spotted wandering the store parking lot in a fitted coat.

Nakhuda alleges the tiny primate was illegally taken from her by animal control officials and moved to the Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary in Sunderland, Ont., where he now lives.

The real estate lawyer says she was never given the chance to remedy the situation after being fined $240 for breaking the city’s prohibited-animal bylaw.

“There has been no due process of law,” she told Toronto radio station Newstalk1010.

“Any animal taken away from an owner, the owner would have had the chance to relocate or do something to move with the animal, that’s what’s prescribed by the bylaw.”

In court documents, she says she, her husband and their two kids would be willing to move to a city that allows monkeys in order to keep Darwin, whom they consider part of the family.

None of the allegations contained in the documents have been tested in court.

The primate sanctuary has previously said the monkey is doing well and the agency was prepared to fight any legal challenges for its return.

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