Arizona man indicted after allegedly trying to sell tiger cub on social media
A Maricopa County, Arizona grand jury indicted a man on Tuesday for allegedly trying to sell a tiger cub on social media.
Carlos Eduardo Castro Alcaraz, 25, was charged with one felony count of unlawful taking, handling, possession, or sale of wildlife.
FOX 10 in Phoenix reported that Alcaraz was arrested on Jan. 23, following an investigation into a tip that Alcaraz was attempting to sell the cub on social media for $25,000.
During the investigation, detectives posed as buyers and reportedly negotiated on a price of $20,000 with Alcaraz.
The department executed a search warrant at a home near 27th Avenue and Baseline Road, where they recovered the cub.
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“When they were doing that search warrant, you could hear the tiger in the background moaning. You could hear that something wasn’t right,” Phoenix Police Department Sgt. Brian Bower told FOX 10. “The tiger, specifically, was in a very small cage. Kind of a cage that you would find as a dog kennel. Approximately ⅔ feet.”
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Police also found several other animals like baby snapping turtles and a baby American alligator.
Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchel announced the indictment against Alcaraz on Tuesday, more than a month after he was arrested.
“One of my priorities when taking office was prosecuting crimes against animals as they are some of the most vulnerable in our community,” Mitchell said. “It is reassuring to know that after law enforcement intercepted, the tiger cub was removed from the home, taken to a safe place and is currently in good health.”
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The cub has been turned over to the care of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
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