Suspected dealers in Brussels charged with cruelty to exotic animals

Suspected dealers in Brussels charged with cruelty to exotic animals
© Belga

Prosecutors are pursuing two men caught with a small cannabis farm in a Brussels city flat for harming exotic animals, after finding a small zoo including a python, scorpions and tarantula spiders.

The father and adult son were released after their arrest when police unearthed the unusual stash in the city’s northern Evere district with the investigating magistrate pursuing the suspected dealers on both counts.

“Two people have been arrested for the cultivation of drugs and breaching legislation concerning animal well-being,” the Public Prosecutor’s office said.

Cops raided the apartment on Wednesday evening and alongside the seizure of 37 cannabis plants, specialist growing lamps and 228 grass wraps, had to call in animal experts to cart off the mini-zoo.

Officials listed 52 tarantula spiders, one python, three scorpions, four turtles, two pogona lizards and 16 scarab beetles.

None of these creatures is normally poisonous — what prosecutors may now have to argue in court is to what extent the human cultivation of cannabis in an enclosed space is harmful to wildlife.


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