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Illegal Skins, Ivory: A New York Billionaire's Company Pleads Guilty to Illegally Importing Wildlife Parts

Animals  (tags: animals, wildlife, wildanimals, suffering, sadness, extinction, endangered, cruelty, death, humans, billionaire, crime, poaching, hunting, ivory, elephant, tusks, tiger, zebra, jaguar, python, leopard, lion, rugs, skins )

- 3115 days ago -
A NY billionaire pleaded guilty to illegally importing wildlife parts after Inspectors found a haul of elephant tusks, a mounted tiger head, python hide bar stools, rugs made of zebra, jaguar, lion, leopard and tiger and a stuffed lion on his 150 ft yacht

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Dee C (23)
Friday May 15, 2009, 7:00 pm
Thanks Tom..
Noted with disgust..

Past Member (0)
Friday May 15, 2009, 7:16 pm
Greed..terrible..noted.Thank you Tom

rose s (239)
Friday May 15, 2009, 7:19 pm
Tamir Sapir thinks he can get away with his billions thanks to scrutiny of customs- one scum has been caught.To think a man with that kind of money would have some consideration for endangered species.It is classic case of MONEY CAN"T BUY BREEDING(wisdom)It would have been ideal if he had gotten
jail time!


stephanie v (85)
Friday May 15, 2009, 7:35 pm
There was a poll on the story: results so far Do you think the $150,000 fine was enough?

Yes, I think the fine was just under the current law (13 responses)


No, the penalty should have been sterner to prevent this from happening again (79 responses)


92 total responses (Results not scientific)

The name of the yacht is M/Y Mystere C I. More like MISERY Cruel Intentions..... Thanks Tom, noted in complete disgust.

Tom M (814)
Friday May 15, 2009, 7:54 pm
"U.S. Attorney Alex Acosta said prosecutors take environmental crimes seriously. "It's a very important case and we prosecuted it vigorously," he said. Asked why no individuals were charged, he said the yacht was owned by a corporation, so that's the entity that could be charged."

"The yacht is owned by Ruzial Ltd., a Cayman Islands company that federal prosecutors said existed only to hold title to the yacht. Signing the guilty plea was the company's sole director, Tamir Sapir, a Soviet-born billionaire who owns several Manhattan office buildings."

This is totally bogus. The US is allowing this criminal to hide behind his company, when he is the sol director of the company? What's wrong with this picture? People commit crimes, not companies or yachts. This guy got away with it because he is a billionaire and has political connections. $150,000 is nothing to a billionaire. Chump change. A billion dollars is a thousand million dollars! $150,000 to a billionaire is like $150 to a millionaire. Nothing.

Tom M (814)
Friday May 15, 2009, 8:02 pm
Why didn't they confiscate his yacht? They confiscate cars and houses when they are used in the commission of a crime by ordinary Americans before they are found guilty, depriving them of a way to get money to defend themselves. Why does he have a company in the Cayman Islands anyway, if he is an American? I wonder how much money he hides their to avoid paying his taxes.

Tom M (814)
Friday May 15, 2009, 8:06 pm
"Behind every great fortune there is a crime" --Honore de Balzac

Past Member (0)
Friday May 15, 2009, 8:06 pm
This guy makes me sick!

Roseann d (178)
Friday May 15, 2009, 8:29 pm
People w/ money do the stupidest things. Fools and their money are soon parted....but not soon enough for the unfortunate wildlife.

CherAWAY N (1449)
Friday May 15, 2009, 9:02 pm

Thnx hun!!


sue M (184)
Friday May 15, 2009, 10:38 pm
Everything should have been confiscated that he bought with this atrocitiy!

Kit B (276)
Friday May 15, 2009, 11:03 pm
Every country must make this illegal and have penalites to fit the crimes, I wonder if even murder of another human would touch this kind of wealth? He and others like him have reason to believe they are above the law. They are allowed to do this with no signifianct penalty.

Tom M (814)
Friday May 15, 2009, 11:42 pm
Kit, of course billionaires can and do get away with murder. They just throw a few million dollars at the bereaved family and poof, case closed!

Elainna Crowell (174)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 12:20 am
I simply don't understand why the yacht wasn't confiscated. I wish his face was published so some fanatical animal rights groups could go after him! People like this make me ill!

mary f (202)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 2:08 am
i think they should confiscate his yacht that would tell him its serious

Elm M (357)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 2:30 am
Oops his surname should read 'Sapir' but the link URL is correct.

Elm M (357)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 2:33 am
For those who would like to paste this man's pictures all over activist sites on the net - go to this link and save the picture to your computer and upload to your pics in Care2. Then you can create links to it all over the net, or just copy it from your album (once pic is opened in your pic album) and paste it into groups/forums/website blogs.

Pictures of Tamir Sapier

Happy publishing....

Noted, thanks Tom

D. E (10)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 9:55 am
What a waste of money!

Sandra Martinho (35)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 10:26 am
Stupid man! A see in spanish channel news, a similar story envolving other milionaire in spain! the good news.. are in the jail now!

Mandi T (417)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 11:31 am
Tx Tom Noted with anger and disgust

Leigh B (211)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 11:46 am
Disgusting and pathetic to obtain wild animal parts to boost his ego!

Gillian M (218)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 1:17 pm
$150,000 would be like pennies to Sapir and is pointless. In the UK the directors can be charged separately as responsible for the actions of the company. It makes sense as they make the decisions for the company.

It's a pity that they couldn't seize the yacht but I think it has to be purchased as the result of a crime.

Past Member (0)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 1:37 pm
This is really sickening...this is really sad when I read about the yacht. I am glad he was punished...but it never seems to be enough to stop or even deter.

With this kind of stuff going on, I doubt I will ever see a tiger or lion live, which is one of my dreams.

Charlie L (29)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 2:36 pm
Thanks Tom, noted with anger and revulsion. As you point out, $150,000 is nothing to someone of his means. I feel that when judges decide to give fines to offenders, that individual's wealth should be taken into account.
As far as I'm concerned a fine of any amount of money is not enough. He should get prison time and plenty of it.

Carole D (35)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 4:49 pm
It is unfortunate that in this day and time the world has not come any further than it was decades ago as far as the judicial system goes where trophy hunters and hunters that use wildlife skins for profit are concerned .People like Sapir who have more money then they have good sense and use it for senseless killings of wildlife instead of any number of worthwhile causes should be shot on the spot. Of course this is inconceivable. They can kill all the wildlife while nothing happens to them I ASK YOU WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS PICTURE??????????????

greenplanet e (155)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 9:22 pm
I hate it that dead wild animals are seen by some (rich) people as trophies or status symbols. Disgusting. The fine should have been $1 million+ or something, given to conservation.

Simone D (1471)
Saturday May 16, 2009, 11:14 pm
Thank you dear Tom!

Sheila G (267)
Sunday May 17, 2009, 3:32 am
cowardly murdering animals for fun, turn him loose alone in the jungle, there is a punishment to fit his crime. that fine is b.s., it would only hurt someone like me, with no hope of paying, wth is 150K to a billionaire?

Cathi Hartline (248)
Sunday May 17, 2009, 9:53 am
they should take his yacht! thank You Tom!

Cynthia Sopel (62)
Sunday May 17, 2009, 5:37 pm
Another example of a rich person who doesn't know what to do with his dirty money!! He should be skinned and stuffed alive HIMSELF!

Julie van Niekerk (230)
Monday May 18, 2009, 11:17 am
He should join care2 and view all the cruelty. He should work at a shelter to see all the cruelty. Maybe he will put his money to good use and donate towards the SURVIVAL of the animals.

Samantha R (41)
Wednesday May 20, 2009, 10:49 am
may the souls of these dead animals haunt him forever and may he never sleep a night without seeing the horrendous act of barbarity for what it truly is.

Leigh B (211)
Wednesday May 20, 2009, 9:09 pm
So glad he got caught, but big game hunt licenses must be banned!, thanks Tom
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