New Yorker Sentenced to Prison for Exotic Cat Trafficking; some were of the same breed that was released on Royal Oak

ROYAL OAK, Mich. – A New York man was sentenced to prison for trafficking exotic African cats, some of which were the same breed as those he escaped from a house in royal oak last weekauthorities said.

Cats run away in Royal Oak

A Royal Oak Woman five tickets were issued after four African caracal cats escaped from her home, and police said this was not the first time the cats came out. Even after “Bam Bam”, the last of the cats to be retrieved, I returned homequestions persisted about the woman’s ownership of these African cats.

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An example image of African Caracals. (Royal Oak Schools)

Police said that due to the woman’s “inability to keep the animals contained on her property,” the department encouraged her to move them to a more suitable environment. The woman agreed and hired a transportation company to relocate them, according to authorities.

New York man sentenced

On Tuesday (October 19), Christopher Casacci, 39, of Amherst, New York, was sentenced to 18 months in prison for violating the Lacey Act and the Animal Welfare Act by trafficking African wild cats, the Justice Department announced. from United States.

“The purpose of the Lacey Act and the Animal Welfare Act is to protect fish, wildlife and other animals, especially those that may be in danger, from people who seek to profit from trafficking,” said US Attorney Trini E.Ross. “Enforcing these measures is important to ensure that animals, like exotic African cats in this case, are protected.”

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Authorities said Casacci promoted, imported and sold exotic African cats through “ExoticCubs.com” between February 2018 and June 2018.

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Casacci is accused of importing and selling dozens of caracals and servals for between $7,500 and $10,000 each, according to authorities.

He claimed he was operating as a big cat rescue organization to avoid punishment, authorities said.

Casacci is also accused of falsifying shipping documents to hide the cats’ true species, calling them Bengal or Savannah cats instead of identifying the true species, federal authorities said.

It was not approved to sell the cats under the Animal Welfare Act, according to authorities.

“Selling wild animals as pets not only breaks the law, but also endangers local communities and the environment,” said Assistant Attorney General Todd Kim of the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division.

More about the case

Also known as the “desert lynx,” caracals grow to around 45 pounds, officials said. Casacci is accused of marketing them as “household pets.”

Both caracals and servals are protected by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, and their commercial possession and sale are restricted by New York law, according to federal authorities.

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Authorities said several kittens imported by Casacci died while in his care or days after he sold them, and many others were seized from him during the investigation.

The cats seized during the investigation remain permanently in accredited animal sanctuaries, authorities said.

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