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Smuggler Caught Shipping tarantulas in LA

Discussion in 'Tarantula Chat' started by KenTheBugGuy, Dec 3, 2010.

  1. Lorum

    Lorum Arachnosquire

    It is sad when laws are useless for the means they were planned... CBB slings do not harm in any way natural populations of T's.
  2. The issue at hand is not if the species were captive bred or not, or whether the law is smart or not, I think we can all agree that the law goes a bit too far and causes us hobbyists a great invonvenience. The issue is that the law was broken, period. The proper permits were not used and a system was circumvented. As someone aptly stated previously in this thread, they sometimes choose to break a law out of convenience and when caught get fined. I am still hoping that Sven comes out of this without any major sentence.
  3. Treynok

    Treynok Arachnoknight

    I don't think the issue here is with whether or not they are CB or WC. I really don't think it has anything to do with whether or not they are CITES listed or not either though that has to do with paperwork. It has to do with the proper procedure not being followed and the proper paperwork not being followed and filled out. This could have been prevented and really that is all this is about they fill in the other information in the article to get peoples attention more easily and quickly. Without providing extra information the average person probably wouldn't care much about the article.

    Edit: ehh beat me to it Lev
  4. Remind me to acquire needed permits if I ever get around to breeding Brachypelma boehmei or Brachypelma klassi.

    These two species truly need a much larger presence in the hobby.
  5. Nomadinexile

    Nomadinexile Arachnoking

    Obviously, the below topic deals with a much more serious issue than the selling and trading of captive bred slings. However, it is also very relevant to the topic at hand, particularly those that say "follow the laws". If everyone always followed the laws, we'd still be british, we'd still be fighting in Vietnam, and women couldn't vote or have birth control. There is a perspective lost on most Americans today regarding laws. We willingly take unjust after unjust law, hence why this country is no longer great. In the meanwhile, our politicians are the biggest crooks around. Taking money for votes in congress, bombing the world, and running the country generally into the ground by giving tax breaks to the rich and bailouts to bankers alone. Heed the words of the great men and women who came before us, before we loose it all.

    "It is not only his right, but his duty...to find the verdict according to his own best understanding, judgment and conscience, though in direct opposition to the direction of the court." John Adams

    "Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!" PATRICK HENRY


    "Letter from a Birmingham Jail [King, Jr.]"

    16 April 1963

    ...There comes a time when the cup of endurance runs over, and men are no longer willing to be plunged into the abyss of despair. I hope, sirs, you can understand our legitimate and unavoidable impatience. You express a great deal of anxiety over our willingness to break laws. This is certainly a legitimate concern. Since we so diligently urge people to obey the Supreme Court's decision of 1954 outlawing segregation in the public schools, at first glance it may seem rather paradoxical for us consciously to break laws. One may well ask: "How can you advocate breaking some laws and obeying others?" The answer lies in the fact that there are two types of laws: just and unjust. I would be the first to advocate obeying just laws. One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws. I would agree with St. Augustine that "an unjust law is no law at all."

    ...Let us consider a more concrete example of just and unjust laws. An unjust law is a code that a numerical or power majority group compels a minority group to obey but does not make binding on itself. This is difference made legal. By the same token, a just law is a code that a majority compels a minority to follow and that it is willing to follow itself. This is sameness made legal...


    America has more people in jail as a percentage of population than any other country in the world, hands down. Is this because we are a nation of criminals? Is this because our police forces are so adept?

    Or is it because we live in fascist state? Musolinni said, "Fascism should more appropriately be called Corporatism because it is a merger of state and corporate power."

    We have so many unjust laws it would make your head spin. In fact, to find out the laws on any given subject these days requires hiring a lawyer to research them in their entirety. I've looked into getting my license to import, and yet even here have been unable to get a straight answer on how to do so. I do know that there are multiple agencies to contact and fill out paperwork for.

    I also know that you are looking at paying thousands and thousands of dollars to multiple agencies. Not so they can see if you are capable of caring for the species, but to collect money, or rather a TAX. This is not okay. This is not acceptable. But we've become a criminalized populace. Reduced to being fined and jailed for anything and everything. Current and proposed laws will only make this worse.

    If we are to pay for the ability to import, it should come with a service that protects the animals in question. Yet it does not.

    How is it, that you can pay the Taxes to import, and import whatever you would like by the thousands, including adult wild populations that are collected unethically; Yet you face 20 years in prison for shipping a couple hundred slings, a fraction of an eggsack? Is this just? Is this right?

    The law is the law bull doesn't fly with me anymore. It's a joke. Our politicians are criminals, yet do they serve time? We have a government that is the worlds largest weapons dealers, and the worlds war machine, yet who is serving time?

    Our Nation is already a joke. It's getting worse, and is down right scary in many, many regards. This has to change. I don't know how. I don't have all the answers. But there are bigger fish to fry in this country than a guy shipping Tarantula slings.

    How about the pimps of teenagers? How about the pedophiles? How about the gangsters running our country?

    We're descending into third world status, bombing the world. Our presidents lie to our faces, "weapons of mass destruction". When is this going to end?

    Police kill peoples dogs for fun, use stun guns on non-resisting old people and children. Your kids get naked pictures taken of them at the airports, or molested if you don't want them to get the radiation dose and their "picture" taken.

    Don't spout the "follow the law" bull,. Our nation is sick, and that attitude is partly responsible for that.

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 5, 2010

    PAUL BOLLINGER Arachnopeon

    I assumed the T's were AD smuggled out of Mexico Proper... If they were cb babies, then I could take a different stance on the issue.. HOWEVER, he made a decision and Im sure he was aware of the risks involved...
    If you play with CITES protected species, you're playing with fire if not done correctly. Risk vs gain...I think his assessment was off..

    and for the purpose of conversation... You dont need to agree with the laws, but when you choose to ignore and/or circumvent them... There are consequences to getting caught... If you cant handle a speeding ticket, dont speed...I dont give a damn if you agree with the speed limit signs, they exist and so do the consequences for breaking them...
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 5, 2010
  7. I agree Paul, I don't like many laws, and some I do admit to breaking every now and then, of which I have paid fines and tickets. It comes with the territory. I don't think Sven should be put to prison, and yes it is ridiculous the amount of tax dollars the US government put into "operation spiderman" (can't believe the moniker), but if you know there is a law against something and break it no matter how trivial or ridiculous, there may be some consequences.
  8. Up to 20 years along side murders and rapists and 250K fine for failing to fill out paperwork to sell captive bred specimens. Idiotic.
  9. harmroelf

    harmroelf Arachnosquire Old Timer

    20 years in a prison in another country?? does he have a family? What the heck??? I feel very sorry for the guy, even though he made a mistake this punnishment is ridiculous! In what way is this comparable with murder and rape??? The thought of what he is going trough right now makes me sick!! Can't we do something as hobbieists to show that this is killing an ant with an atomic bomb?

  10. Not sure where you assumed that information from as its clear Sven is a European breeder selling his captive bred stock Internationally.

    Lets put the fine and prison term in perspective. Sven has been arrested and charged. We don't know if he's pleaded guilty nor do we know his defence. But the punishment quoted is the maximum under that law, NOT the cemented figure.

    We should also be mindful of our comments in these forums, you can bet your life journalists and investigatory bodies are studying them. Makes me wonder about the requests I received from US "hobbyists" to send spiders I was offering in the classifieds of a UK forum.

    PAUL BOLLINGER Arachnopeon

    Unless he is a repeat offender....

    He will be judged by a Jury of his peers. His past record will come into play and I dont think there is a jury that would condemn a good man to 20 years in a Federal Prision for a violation like this. Is the system flawed? you bet. Are the laws rediculous? In my opinion, Yes. Does any of that matter? Absolutely Not.. We've all agreed to play by the rules that the Feds and the International treaty have set fourth. Does breaking the law make you a morally bad person? No, but it is short-sighted in my opinion... Deviate from these laws and there are consequences. He's done everyone a great favor by illustrating CITES is no joke... And Customs and US Fish and Wildlife will go to extreme lengths to justify thier budgets..
    I pray that he doesnt serve a day for this.

    same "rediculous law" carries. This is a good reminder to those who
  12. thebugwife

    thebugwife Arachnopeon

    Everyone here who as ordered "Venomous Animals" and received them from ANY Shipping service HAS BROKEN THE RULES! Now I am not saying that everyone has broken the law, it is not Illegal to ship Ts via UPS or FedEx but it is against their policies. Shipping Ts via USPS is Illegal domestic or international.

    Ok That said, anyone shipping or receiving Ts should be aware of, fully understand, and be willing to accept the consequences of doing so.

    Is Sven a bad Guy? Heck No!
    Did he do something he knew was illegal? Heck Yes!
    Does it suck? yup....

    So now everyone we all need to help! This is a start!
  13. curiousme

    curiousme Arachnoprince Old Timer

    100% agree

    Edited to Add:

    The fact that they wasted government funds on this is revolting. There are much better uses for that money in a country that is in the midst of a recession.

    PAUL BOLLINGER Arachnopeon

    got some bad news guys,,,,,

    Gravity is a law too... If you choose not to heed it there are consequences.. whether or not you agree with it, it exists....
    Got some bad news about fire as well, but I think you know where this is going.
    There is a victim here, but he gave the powers that be everything they needed to make an arrest.
    Get pulled over in a school zone and caught with a bag of pot in your pocket and you face 10 years in jail...is the punishment equal to the crime? Heck NO!, but when it happens, who is to blame? The cops? The Legislators? C'mon folks...
  15. curiousme

    curiousme Arachnoprince Old Timer

    Gravity is not a law made by humans. It is not one that I can consider unjust, or have the option of choosing not to follow it. If I could, believe me I would for the fun of it. Fire is not a law, so I do not know where you are going with it.....

    I will not side with the law in this instance, because the law is ridiculous. The powers that be need to start working on solving real problems and not wasting money on things like this. I blame the people that OKed the law and the people went to such extremes to uphold it. Just because there is a law against something, does not make the law right. There is an old and outdated law against sodomy in Oklahoma, but if they went to these lengths to punish people for that I would be equally outraged. Laws need to be re-examined for current relevance, but sadly it does not happen often enough.

    Edited to add:

    I realize this is proper paperwork that wasn't done, so the proper hoops were not jumped through. It doesn't make it any less idiotic. It sounds as if the proper paperwork is a nightmare and that it was should be reexamined.
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2010

    PAUL BOLLINGER Arachnopeon

    I understand your point curiousme...

    so waive your finger in every other direction besides your own when you get caught breaking the law... I didn't say I sided with the law... Just that I side with personal accountability...

    Sven damn sure knows, and Now you do too... Test the waters.... Ship some CITES animals around the world illegally you'll face the same penalties. If you cant do 20 and afford 250,000 in fines, then sell and ship Non-cites species
    Whether or not you agree, it exists, ask Sven.
  17. syndicate

    syndicate Arachnoemperor Old Timer

    Pretty much!I'm wondering what will happen to the 9 people in the USA that were receiving box's from him?I bet there crapping there pants right now..
  18. Bill S

    Bill S Arachnoprince Old Timer

    Absolute agreement from me on this point. There are far more important issues that the money and efforts should have been directed to. Unfortunately, there's a bureaucratic mentality that says that catching ANY lawbreakers enhances your status, so they go for easy, insignificant ones with as much (or more) vigor as serious ones.
  19. curiousme

    curiousme Arachnoprince Old Timer

    I see, perhaps I misunderstood your point then.

    It isn't something I would personally choose to ignore or bypass if I started breeding to that extent, but that doesn't mean I agree with it.
  20. Wadew

    Wadew Arachnobaron Old Timer

    "Think befor opening you mouth"

    This is an unfortunate situation here for more then just Sven! Think about where 99% of the livestock is coming from and where the hobby would be without Germany! Before comments are made from dealers like "Good" and others posting more negative feedback realize it is easy to be shortsighted and jump on the bandwagon without looking in the mirror first and seeing a hypocrite! It is evident here America is going to continue to create a "bad taste" with the rest of the world. And think about the next time you purchase or sell a tarantula and drive to the post to deliver it!

    food for thought
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