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Virginia Fox Pens Closed

Result of two-year investigation, attorney general says

July 18, 2018 - 1:12 pm

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The Virginia attorney general's office says a two-year investigation has led to the closure of six fox pens, enclosures in which wild foxes are contained and chased by hunting dogs.

Attorney General Mark Herring's office told The Associated Press ahead of an official announcement Wednesday that it has secured nine guilty pleas after a sweep targeting fox pens stocked with illegally purchased wildlife.

Six pens lost their licenses as a result. Herring spokeswoman Charlotte Gomer says those six are among the first to have their licenses pulled since the passage of a 2014 law intended to phase out the controversial practice of fox penning.

Supporters say the facilities are a safe way to train hunting dogs. Animal welfare groups and other opponents argue penning is a cruel practice.

The nine people who pleaded guilty received suspended sentences.

 

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