CA House arrest for tiger owner

Avatar BCR | May 8, 2007 13 Views 0 Likes 0 Ratings

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House arrest for tiger owner

Animal on loose for month in ’05

Article Last Updated: 05/07/2007 09:30:21 PM PDT



The former owner of a Ventura County animal sanctuary was sentenced Monday to house arrest for eight months for misleading officials after a tiger got loose near Moorpark.


Gert Einar "Abby" Hedengran also was placed on probation for three years. He had pleaded guilty to a charge of misleading federal officials while his tiger, Tuffy, was on the loose for nearly a month in eastern Ventura County in 2005.


The tiger was eventually shot and killed by federal officials near an elementary school.


The animal had escaped from a sanctuary that Hedengran and his wife had relocated from San Diego County to Moorpark in January 2005.


As a part of a plea bargain, Hedengran, who now lives in Pahrump, Nev., pleaded guilty in January to felony counts of making false statements to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agents and of obstructing justice.


He also pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of failing to maintain proper records for the exotic felines. Although prosecutors were asking for 14 months in federal prison for Hedengran, they said they are satisfied with the decision.


"We were pleased that this matter has been resolved and Mr. Hedengran is going to be punished for his conduct that caused so much concern in Ventura County," said Thom Mrozek, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Hedengran’s wife, Roena "Emma" Hedengran, 54, is expected to be sentenced May 14. She pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of failing to maintain records of exotic felines.


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an Educational Sanctuary home

to more than 100 big cats

12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625

813.493.4564 fax 885.4457


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