PAWS shelter thief identified
Emmanuel Tupas (The Philippine Star) - October 18, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Police have identified the man who stole two purebred cats from the Philippine Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) shelter in Quezon City.

Lt. Col. Imelda Reyes, Quezon City Police District Station 9 commander, said yesterday they identified the thief through surveillance camera footage and testimonies of bystanders.

However, Reyes declined to name the thief as they have yet to file a case against him for violation of Republic Act 8485 or the Animal Welfare Act.

The man was caught on surveillance footage stealing a British Shorthair and a Scottish Fold from the PAWS shelter in Barangay Loyola Heights between 2:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Oct. 11.

PAWS executive director Ana Cabrera said the cats were among 26 animals rescued from a warehouse the previous day.

“Both were observed to have respiratory ailments and signs of dehydration from the extreme stress of having been kept in small carriers,” Cabrera said in a statement.

The Scottish Fold was returned to PAWS on Oct. 15 after a concerned citizen turned it over to barangay officials.

Cabrera said a purebred animal is worth P100,000 – the reason importers are willing to take risks in smuggling animals into the country.

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