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Alamo couple accused of selling exotic cats

4 months 3 weeks 2 days ago Wednesday, September 27 2023 Sep 27, 2023 September 27, 2023 11:13 PM September 27, 2023 in News - Local

An Alamo couple appeared in federal court Wednesday after they sold exotic cats to an undercover federal agent, according to the US Attorney’s Office.

Rafael Gutierrez-Galvan, 29, and his wife Deyanira Garza, 28, sold a margay cub Aug. 24 for $7,500 to an undercover Homeland Security Investigations agent in a local Academy Sports and Outdoors parking lot, a news release stated.

On Sept. 26, Gutierrez-Galvan then attempted to sell a jaguar cub to the same individual. Law enforcement agents conducted a traffic stop and apprehended both individuals and recovered both animals.

“Neither Gutierrez-Galvan or Garza possess a license to buy, sell, trade or transport exotic animals such as margays and jaguars,” the news release stated.

The news release noted this was the first case filed under the Big Cat Act, which was enacted in Dec. 2022 and prohibits the importation, transportation, sale and possession of prohibited wildlife species.

If convicted, Gutierrez-Galvan and Garza face up to five years in federal prison and a possible $20,000 maximum fine.

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