A Texas couple who offered an unique South American cat to an secret agent was arrested whereas making an attempt to promote a jaguar cub to the identical buyer a month later, based on courtroom paperwork.
Though the cats could also be small, promoting them violates the federal Public Security Act for big cats, based on the British newspaper “Day by day Mail.” US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Texas.
Rafael Gutierrez Galvan, 29, met with a Homeland Safety Investigations particular agent “working undercover” within the parking zone of an area Sports activities and Out of doors Academy on Aug. 24, based on a felony grievance.
“Gutierrez Galvan delivered Fringe to the secret agent in change for $7,500,” the grievance states.
Practically a month after the primary wildlife trafficking incident, Gutierrez Galván met with the identical secret agent handy over a jaguar cub on September 26.
When federal officers approached Gutierrez Galván, he mentioned in Spanish: “I am simply right here to promote a cat,” the felony grievance mentioned.
Federal brokers have been monitoring Gutierrez Galvan’s dwelling — and on the identical day of the second transaction, brokers noticed Deianira Garza, 28, leaving the home “carrying one thing that seemed to be some sort of case” to fulfill her husband, Gutierrez. Galvan is in his place.
Earlier than Garza might meet her husband, an Alamo police officer stopped her for not indicating her position, based on the grievance.
“Throughout the visitors cease, Garza acknowledged there was cash within the case,” the grievance states.
Garza was taken into custody and admitted that neither she nor Gutierrez Galvan have been licensed to purchase, promote, commerce or transport unique animals, the grievance mentioned.
If convicted, Gutierrez Galván and Garza might resist 5 years in federal jail, with a most nice of $20,000.
The Alamo couple’s case is the primary case introduced underneath the legislation Big Cat Public Safety ActUS Lawyer Alamdar S. Hamdani introduced.
The measure got here into drive in December 2022, prohibiting the import, export, sale and personal possession of massive cats as pets, together with cubs.
Prohibited wildlife species embrace:
People or personal entities who owned huge cats earlier than the legislation went into impact are exempt, however their animals have to be registered with the Fish and Wildlife Service.
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