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Police investigate sale of tigers in Wal-Mart parking lot (McAllen,TX)
Brownsville Herald ^ | 06/19/2008 | Ryan Holeywell

Posted on 06/19/2008 6:07:35 AM PDT by devane617

McALLEN - Police and federal authorities are investigating the sale of six Bengal tiger cubs in a Wal-Mart parking lot Sunday afternoon.

The animals appear to have been bound for Mexico and neither the buyer nor seller had the permits needed to legally transport the endangered species across national borders, a federal agent said.

A group from Spring Hill Widlife Ranch in Bryan was selling the cubs - four white ones and two orange ones - in the parking lot of the Wal-Mart near Jackson Avenue and Expressway 83.

Authorities believe the Spring Hill employees were selling the tigers to a pre-arranged buyer via an intermediary, and that the animals' final destination would be in Mexico.

"The people who were picking up the tigers and taking possession of them... were Mexican nationals in a Mexico-licensed vehicle," said Special Agent Alejandro Rodriguez of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. He said tigers have been smuggled into Mexico through the Rio Grande Valley before.

Rodriguez said some people involved in the transaction said the tigers were to be taken to a Mexico City zoo, while others said they would be going to Roma.

Under federal law, it's illegal to transport an endangered species across national borders unless both buyer and seller have what is known as a CITES permit.

Those involved in the transaction could face federal conspiracy charges if authorities determine the animals were, in fact, Mexico-bound.

Police said ranch employees were selling the white cubs for $5,500 per animal, and the orange ones for $900 per animal. The buyers' vehicle lacked air conditioning, police said, which also raised concern about the animals' safety.

Rodriguez said the cubs are healthy and would be transported to the Gladys Porter Zoo in Brownsville as authorities continue their investigation.

The orange tigers are about 10 weeks old, Rodriguez said, and the white ones are about two weeks old.

Rodriguez said it appears Spring Hill has sold tigers in the Rio Grande Valley at least two other times in the last 18 months.

Police arrested the co-owner of Spring Hill Wildlife Ranch for interfering with public duties, authorities said.

The woman, whose name police have not released, attempted to barricade herself in the truck containing the tigers after Monitor staff began photographing the animals from the parking lot. She is expected to be arraigned Monday.

Two people who had been questioned by the police about the transaction declined to comment on the case to The Monitor.

Police learned of the transaction when a McAllen Police Department patrol officer became suspicious of the truck with Mexican license plates in the Wal-Mart parking lot, police said.

When the officer approached, the group moved to the parking lot of the nearby Mervyn's department store, prompting him to follow and ultimately discover the tiger cubs.

"The basic premise of this transaction in a parking lot - it doesn't seem right," said McAllen Police Sgt. Eddie De La Rosa.

Bengal tigers can grow to 9 feet long and weight more than 550 pounds. There are about 2,000 Bengal tigers living in the wild. The cats can be found in Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Myanmar and Nepal.

Jerry Stones, facilities director at Gladys Porter Zoo in Brownsville, said Bengal tigers are an endangered species. There are thousands of large cats including tigers, leopards and lions owned privately - and legally -in Texas, Stones said.

He said he thinks some tiger owners may not realize the effort that goes into caring for the cats. "They buy them as babies," Stones said. "They don't realize it's going to get to be hundreds of pounds, eat an awful lot of food and become dangerous."


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: Texas
KEYWORDS: for; kittyping; sale; tiger; tx
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Just what I always wanted...
1 posted on 06/19/2008 6:07:36 AM PDT by devane617
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To: devane617

Have people lost their ever lovin’ minds?


2 posted on 06/19/2008 6:08:24 AM PDT by yldstrk (My heros have always been cowboys--Reagan and Bush)
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To: devane617

Walmart tigers are painted with lead based paint.


3 posted on 06/19/2008 6:09:09 AM PDT by DogBarkTree (The correct word isn't "immigrant" when what they are doing is "invading".)
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To: Gabz

Best Wal-Mart related story EVER! LOL!


4 posted on 06/19/2008 6:10:16 AM PDT by Diana in Wisconsin (Save The Earth. It's The Only Planet With Chocolate.)
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To: devane617

Yeah! I want one!


5 posted on 06/19/2008 6:10:17 AM PDT by RichInOC (No! BAD Rich! (What'd I say?))
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To: devane617
Using her stuffed tiger as an audiovisual aid, Koira shows local squirrels the thrashing they can expect if she ever catches them.
6 posted on 06/19/2008 6:11:50 AM PDT by Diana in Wisconsin (Save The Earth. It's The Only Planet With Chocolate.)
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To: Diana in Wisconsin

agree! LMAO!


7 posted on 06/19/2008 6:12:01 AM PDT by RDTF (my worst nightmare is being on jury duty sequestered with 11 liberals)
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To: devane617

Me too. I want my own Wal-Mart!!!


8 posted on 06/19/2008 6:12:51 AM PDT by GulfBreeze (Vote for John McCain along with Tom DeLay, John Cornyn and the majority of conservatives.)
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To: devane617; Slings and Arrows; Glenn; republicangel; Bahbah; Beaker; BADROTOFINGER; etabeta; ...
Police said ranch employees were selling the white cubs for $5,500 per animal, and the orange ones for $900 per animal.

That's cheaper than some of the more exotic domestic cat breeds.


9 posted on 06/19/2008 6:13:42 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows ("Code Pink should guard against creating stereotypes in the Mincing Community." --Titan Magroyne)
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To: devane617

You really CAN buy anything at Wal-Mart!


10 posted on 06/19/2008 6:14:06 AM PDT by Hoodlum91 (I support global warming.)
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To: Slings and Arrows

two weeks old? grrrrr


11 posted on 06/19/2008 6:15:06 AM PDT by Mercat (the LORD himself will establish a house for you)
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To: devane617
"They don't realize it's going to get to be hundreds of pounds, eat an awful lot of food and become dangerous."

Another master stroke for Public Schooling anywhere.

12 posted on 06/19/2008 6:15:20 AM PDT by theDentist (Qwerty ergo typo : I type, therefore I misspelll.)
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To: Hoodlum91
You really CAN buy anything at Wal-Mart!

Get outta my head, I was gonna post that! LOL

13 posted on 06/19/2008 6:16:27 AM PDT by The_Victor (If all I want is a warm feeling, I should just wet my pants.)
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To: devane617

The sale of full grown ones would have resulted in the announcement “Clean up, parking lot, row 4.”


14 posted on 06/19/2008 6:17:23 AM PDT by vietvet67
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To: The_Victor

WooHoo! I’m in Victor’s head!!


15 posted on 06/19/2008 6:18:21 AM PDT by Hoodlum91 (I support global warming.)
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To: Hoodlum91; MeekOneGOP; Conspiracy Guy; DocRock; King Prout; Darksheare; OSHA; martin_fierro; ...
You really CAN buy anything at Wal-Mart!

What you said.


16 posted on 06/19/2008 6:19:20 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows ("Code Pink should guard against creating stereotypes in the Mincing Community." --Titan Magroyne)
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To: devane617

We should integrate such kitties into the “Virtual Fence”...


17 posted on 06/19/2008 6:20:02 AM PDT by gridlock ( If Obama becomes "suddenly" radioactive, the Supers will have Strange New Respect the Popular Vote.)
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To: devane617
A friend of my nephew works on a game ranch south of San Antonio, and claims that there's an escaped tiger loose in the area. There's plenty of hogs, javelina, and whitetail deer, not to mention all of the “exotic” game in the area to sustain it for years.
18 posted on 06/19/2008 6:20:27 AM PDT by conservativeharleyguy (Democrats: Over 60 million fooled daily!!!)
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To: Hoodlum91; The_Victor
WooHoo! I’m in Victor’s head!!

OK. Now start in with... "We had joy, we had fun, we had Seasons In The Sun..."

19 posted on 06/19/2008 6:21:36 AM PDT by gridlock ( If Obama becomes "suddenly" radioactive, the Supers will have Strange New Respect the Popular Vote.)
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To: devane617

Someone in the Deli pick up please, need a Price check, six pack of Bengal tigers.

Price check, six pack Bengal tigers, thank you.


20 posted on 06/19/2008 6:23:52 AM PDT by Dr.Zoidberg ("Shut the hell up, New York Times, you sanctimonious whining jerks!" - Craig Ferguson)
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To: conservativeharleyguy

I’m glad you said south. I’m taking grandkidsks to the one north of San Antonio soon.


21 posted on 06/19/2008 6:24:19 AM PDT by CindyDawg
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To: yldstrk

Unbelievable. A Walmart parking lot? They should have went to the flea market.


22 posted on 06/19/2008 6:25:48 AM PDT by CindyDawg
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To: devane617

You really can get anything at the Walmart. I betcha they were Chinese tigers though and not Bengal ones.


23 posted on 06/19/2008 6:26:25 AM PDT by Tribune7 (How is inflicting pain and death on an innocent, helpless human being for profit, moral?)
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To: devane617
Doesn't that just frost your flakes?


24 posted on 06/19/2008 6:28:15 AM PDT by capt. norm (Never underestimate the power of very stupid people in large groups.)
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To: devane617
The booking picture


25 posted on 06/19/2008 6:30:05 AM PDT by JRios1968 ("If you go over a cliff with all flags flying, you are still going over a cliff"--Ronald Reagan)
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To: devane617

Walmart is amazing!


26 posted on 06/19/2008 6:32:58 AM PDT by killermosquito (Buffalo (and eventually France) is what you get when liberalism runs its course.)
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To: All

I could care less about Walmart. Sadly, these animals are often abused, starved and held in conditions of deplorable filth. The lucky ones reach Wildlife Rescues where their lives dramatically improve, still some are blind from cataracs and a host of other ailments. I wish animal abuse laws were hard-time and carried out to the full extent. The people who breed exotics for sale in my opinion are low scum, bottom feeders. The people who abuse an animal, need to be put out of their pain. Go ahead and flame away. I won’t change my opinion.


27 posted on 06/19/2008 6:39:21 AM PDT by navymom1 (I support Free Speech. Defeat the Fairness Doctrine.)
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To: devane617
Are they talking about that area in front of the store where they drag out the barbecues and lawn furniture? Sure, I want a tiger for my backyard too, but I'm waiting until they're on two-for-one.
28 posted on 06/19/2008 6:40:35 AM PDT by BlazingArizona
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To: devane617; Slings and Arrows
These are shrimps ... where are the full-sized ones?


29 posted on 06/19/2008 6:42:59 AM PDT by Daffynition
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To: devane617
Had this happened in the parking lot of Bed, Bath, and Beyond, does anyone believe Bed, Bath, and Beyond, would be in the headline?
30 posted on 06/19/2008 6:46:18 AM PDT by GOPJ ("I'm afraid after I die, I'll be voting Democrat" - Freeper potlatch)
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To: theDentist

“They don’t realize it’s going to get to be hundreds of pounds, eat an awful lot of food and become dangerous.”

Sounds like a lot of the people I see waddling around in WaddelMart now.


31 posted on 06/19/2008 6:58:34 AM PDT by dblshot
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To: dblshot
Sounds like a lot of the people I see waddling around in WaddelMart now.

Isn't it amazing to see how many "Tub-Boats" the average Wally World has being used at the same time?

32 posted on 06/19/2008 7:01:44 AM PDT by N. Theknow (Kennedys: Can't drive, can't fly, can't ski, can't skipper a boat; but they know what's best for us)
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To: N. Theknow
Somebody said they prefer to go to the Dollar store rather than Walmart because they don't have to dress up to go to the Dollar store. Makes you wonder...
33 posted on 06/19/2008 7:04:45 AM PDT by dblshot
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To: devane617

I always thought that Walmart was one of the better stocked chains. But this surprises even me.


34 posted on 06/19/2008 7:05:45 AM PDT by rod1
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To: Slings and Arrows

That’s because the tigers use your whole house as a scratching post.


35 posted on 06/19/2008 7:08:19 AM PDT by rod1
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To: IncPen

ping


36 posted on 06/19/2008 7:10:58 AM PDT by Nailbiter
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To: devane617
Police investigate sale of tigers in Wal-Mart parking lot

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Now look, Oddball. The trade for the uniforms I can understand. But to buy this tank, you got to be crazy!

37 posted on 06/19/2008 7:16:29 AM PDT by Sax
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To: navymom1

Somehow I don’t think you’re going to find many animal abuse supporters at FR.


38 posted on 06/19/2008 7:20:12 AM PDT by Mr. Silverback (It's not conservative to accept an inept Commander-in-Chief in a time of war. Back Mac.)
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To: devane617
The animals appear to have been bound for Mexico....the animals' final destination would be in Mexico...."The people who were picking up the tigers and taking possession of them... were Mexican nationals in a Mexico-licensed vehicle,"....He said tigers have been smuggled into Mexico through the Rio Grande Valley before.

I get a feeling that there are drug lords who want tigers for private menageries, and that people are going to be fed to them.

39 posted on 06/19/2008 7:20:25 AM PDT by denydenydeny (Expel the priest and you don't inaugurate the age of reason, you get the witch doctor--Paul Johnson)
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To: Slings and Arrows
Unfortunately, this happens around here about once every couple of years and no one blinks an eye. The animals sold at First Monday in Ripley, Mississippi, would shock those from outside the area. One cannot make a public complaint without the fear of retribution.
40 posted on 06/19/2008 7:30:30 AM PDT by vetvetdoug
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To: devane617; Mrs.Nooseman; Diana in Wisconsin; bfree; Graybeard58; CSM; metesky; wanderin; ...

WalMart Ping.............

Tiger in the tank??????? er truck........LOL!!!!


41 posted on 06/19/2008 7:31:46 AM PDT by Gabz (Don't tell my mom I'm a lobbyist, she thinks I'm a piano player in a whorehouse)
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To: N. Theknow
Its amazing to see how many "tub Boats"..

I saw a pretty hot looking babe at a Wal Mart once...

42 posted on 06/19/2008 7:32:42 AM PDT by vetvetdoug
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To: denydenydeny
I get a feeling that there are drug lords who want tigers for private menageries, and that people are going to be fed to them.

Those were my exact thoughts as well.
43 posted on 06/19/2008 7:38:43 AM PDT by philled ("I prefer messy democracy to the stability of tyrants." -- Howar Ziad, Iraqi Ambassador to Canada)
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To: CindyDawg
Police learned of the transaction when a McAllen Police Department patrol officer became suspicious of the truck with Mexican license plates in the Wal-Mart parking lot, police said.

Would this really raise any suspicions?

44 posted on 06/19/2008 7:45:30 AM PDT by SouthTexas (If you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much space!)
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To: Slings and Arrows

People have to be crazy to begin with. =^..^=

These are not their domestic cousins. =^..^=


45 posted on 06/19/2008 7:55:08 AM PDT by Biggirl (A biggirl with a big heart for God's animal creation, with 4 cats in my life as proof. =^..^=)
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To: SouthTexas

LOL. Good catch.


46 posted on 06/19/2008 8:03:05 AM PDT by CindyDawg
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To: navymom1

I don’t want animals abused either but I think you are wrong about the penalties. Our laws are strong enough already. In fact you can get more time for animal abuse than people abuse.


47 posted on 06/19/2008 8:06:57 AM PDT by CindyDawg
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To: rod1
I worked at a NE OH WalMart in Lawn & Garden. We'd have to oversee Pets on slow nights (2nd shift). Boy, can you imagine the purr motors on those tigers? Betcha they were bound for a “hunting preserve” to give the gringos a thrill. Glad these little ones were found and rescued.
48 posted on 06/19/2008 8:16:06 AM PDT by airforceF4
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To: devane617

I know Detroit got off to a lousy start this spring, but selling them in a McAllen parking lot???


49 posted on 06/19/2008 8:41:37 AM PDT by DrewsDad (PIERCE the EARMARKS)
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To: yldstrk
Have people lost their ever lovin’ minds?

Yea, what's up with that whole 'Tigers are an endangered species' non-sense. You can buy tiger cubs in *most* Wal-Mart parking lots. I know I got my two cuties, Mr. Hugo and Mr. Josh, at the Wal-Mart parking lot here in Vancouver. What I like about my Tigers is they are not fussy eaters, the love to run and play frisbee, and always loved to get scratched behind the ears. Cleaning the sandbox is a pain, though.

50 posted on 06/19/2008 1:51:17 PM PDT by Jack Black
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