Man Arrested For Allegedly Selling Duct-Taped Iguanas From SUV
Police have arrested a man in Georgia for allegedly trying to sell iguanas that had been bound with Duct tape from the back of his SUV in a car park.
Pet shop owner Dayniel Del Toro Mendez of Gwinnett County is said to have loaded nearly two dozen iguanas into his car before trying to sell them to passersby, putting the reptiles at risk of death in the process.
Mendez allegedly caught the iguanas in Miami, where iguanas are considered an invasive species. Earlier this year it became illegal to purchase or sell reptiles in Florida, though they can be caught and killed humanely.
Rather than humanely killing the animals, the pet shop owner reportedly transported the iguanas to Norcross in Georgia. Once there, he attempted to sell the creatures for $10 each.
Mendez was arrested and charged with 22 misdemeanour counts of animal cruelty after police received a report about his actions and he was discovered with the reptiles in his car.
Hildeshi Valle, with Gwinnett County Police, said the iguanas had been ‘tied up’ in the back of the SUV, explaining: ‘Their legs were tied with duct tape in a non-ventilated area, which could cause them to die.’
In spite of the poor conditions the animals were being held in, Mendez reportedly told police he did not think he was doing anything wrong, WSB-TV reports.
Hear more about the arrest below:
Valle added: ‘I guess it was his impression it wasn’t an illegal act.’
The 22 iguanas were taken in by Gwinnett Animal Control following Mendez’s arrest, and the authority has since confirmed that the animals have all either been adopted by families or sent to rescue groups.
Mendez has now been released from jail on bond.
If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
Most Read StoriesMost Read