The members of Futuro Vegetal sprayed paint on the luxury venue in Madrid. Damage to uniforms of waiters alone is worth 4,000 Euros.
Four activists of ‘Vegetable future’, an organization that describes itself as a “civil disobedience collective and direct action that combats Climate Crisis through adopting a system based on plant-based food, took part in a Valentine’s Day protest. The activists entered the MasterChef Restaurant in Madrid, and painted the entire room with red and black.
Four activists have been detained and are being investigated at court number 31. CASO ABIERTO is an investigative and news channel owned by Prensa Iberica. It has reported that the first estimate of damages caused to this “nonviolent” action reaches 85,000 Euros.
Around 1:30 pm on 14th February, the incident took place. The four activists of ‘Futuro Vegetal,’ had booked a table for Victor at the luxury restaurant on Velazquez Street. According to a statement from the manager of the restaurant, upon arrival one of them started taking photos of the menu, and then asked if the restaurant had any “vegan” food.
In response to the employee’s refusal, and in front of the stunned customers, two young people, a woman with a blond hair and a man with a darker complexion, started throwing the red and black color they held inside of two water bottles, around the store. A third activist was also recording what happened.
While several employees of the restaurant tried to subdue the activists, one waiter went into the street asking for assistance from a nearby police patrol. Four activists were detained. The four activists were arrested. One is Swedish; another Ecuadorian, and the third from Madrid. They live in Lleida and Granada, with another one living in Las Rozas in Madrid.
The police had arrested two of these men in the past after they participated in protests in December and June 2022. All four men refused to give a statement before the police, and were all released after being accused of an offense of destruction.
According to the perpetrators, the 31st Court of Madrid investigates the incident to try to establish the amount that was lost. The restaurant had undergone a complete renovation a month prior to the attack. Its first estimate is that of the Director of the restaurant. The Director of Operations stated that the establishment had been closed for 45 minutes. He also made an assessment, though detailed, on the potential damage. This was given to the Police.
The document values damage from the paint to the MasterChef logo as 25,000 Euros and 15,000 Euros plus damage to carpentry tools. It also adds damages to the couch (6, 000 euros), wall (3, 000 euros), floor (3,000 euros), grass in the entrance area (6,000 euros), carpet (2,000 euros), tablecloths (1.500 euros), and employee uniforms (4, 500 euros).
In addition, the damages list includes, for a maximum of 85,000 Euros, the loss of revenue generated by the customer’s reservations on that particular day, and the compensation offered to them in their invitations (5000 euros). The expert that the court appoints can confirm or deny these figures, along with the report of the insurer.
The group ‘Futuro Vegetal,’ for its own part, had already taken responsibility for the incident the day after it happened. He posted on Twitter and Telegram: “We took action.” The famous TV show MasterChef’s restaurant was painted in its main dining room. We say “No to meat subsidies on Valentine’s Day.” The activist group had prepared menus that were carried by “the activists.” They read, Plant-based Menu next to a Heart.
Futuro Vegetal members have also been involved in a variety of other non-violent acts and sabotage in the past few months. The assault at Barajas Airport, the disruption of traffic along the M-30, in Madrid, and the throwing of paint on a hamburger company’s headquarters are just a few.
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