The rodents were not given food or water for seven days and died from thirst, it is alleged (File picture: Getty/EyeEm)

A former university employee is facing jail after allegedly letting 100 mice starve to death at an Austrian lab. 

The rodents were allegedly not given food or water for seven days and died from thirst in the animal testing laboratory at the Medical University of Vienna. 

Animal welfare activists from Tierschutz Austria uncovered the case and filed criminal charges against the lab for ‘violating’ the Animal Welfare Act. 

It is alleged the former lab worker inflicted ‘unnecessary torture’ on the animals in November 2020, and if convicted, could be sentenced to two years in prison. 

The employee, who has not been named by local media, was reportedly sacked from the lab at the university’s Center for Biomedical Research, which has apologised for the incident. 

The Medical University of Vienna reportedly apologised for the incident (Picture: Google Maps)

Roland Hoog, a campaigner at the Association against Animal Factories, said: ‘It’s terrible – these little mice are already housed in a most unsuitable manner anyway.  

‘Starving and dying of thirst in this way is incredibly cruel. It’s a real scandal.’ 

The activist added: ‘Mice do not starve or die of thirst overnight. Apparently, there must have been a comprehensive lack of care and control.’ 

A trial is set to begin today. 

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