Photo: Elephant Sanctuary

Ned

The
wheels of justice turn slowly, but the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
has finally charged disgraced circus supplier Lance Ramos with violating the
Animal Welfare Act five years after
it confiscated a starving elephant named Ned from him.

The
charges against Ramos include failing to provide Ned, who was “visibly-emaciated
and in compromised health,” with adequate veterinary care, even after
being advised that Ned was underweight and needed veterinary monitoring.
According to the complaint, Ramos let Ned waste away for at least nine months while failing to have
diagnostic tests conducted to determine the cause of his condition.

Ned
was ultimately confiscated in 2008 and taken to The Elephant Sanctuary in
Tennessee after PETA filed a complaint with the USDA and provided photos of the
severely emaciated elephant. Carol Buckley, the founder and director of The Elephant
Sanctuary, rated his health a two on a scale of one to 10 and described him as
a “bag of bones.” Sadly, Ned was so debilitated that despite a
nutritious diet of fresh vegetables and expert care at the hands of Elephant
Sanctuary staff, he died six months later. The USDA permanently revoked Ramos’
exhibitor’s license in 2009.

In
addition to the charges related to Ned, the USDA also charged Ramos with
denying adequate veterinary care to a lame lion and tiger, failing to provide two
capuchin monkeys with appropriate environmental enrichment, and illegally
operating as a dealer after the revocation of his license, among other
violations.

Ramos is also the subject of another USDA investigation following
a PETA complaint regarding his illegal exhibition of tigers with the notorious Hawthorn Corporation last
year at a Shrine circus performance without a
license. In addition, following a PETA complaint based on a whistleblower tip
that Ramos was unlawfully housing tigers at his Florida property, he
was arrested earlier this year and faces criminal charges.

What You Can Do

Urge
the USDA to show the Hawthorn
Corporation
 that it’s not above the law by
permanently revoking its license. 

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Article source: PETA Files

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