U.S. Government Seizes 68 Protected Big Cats and a Jaguar from Jeffrey and Lauren Lowe
(STL.News) The United States has seized 68 protected lions, tigers, lion-tiger hybrids, and a jaguar from Jeffrey and Lauren Lowe’s Tiger King Park in Thackerville, Oklahoma, pursuant to a judicially-authorized search and seizure warrant, for ongoing Endangered Species Act (ESA) violations. The Justice Department will seek civil forfeiture of these animals and any offspring pursuant to the ESA’s forfeiture provision.
Pursuant to a court-approved stipulation in United States v. Lowe, et al., No. 20-423 (E.D. Okla.), the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has conducted three inspections of Tiger King Park since mid-December 2020. During these inspections, the Lowes received citations for failing to provide the animals with adequate or timely veterinary care, appropriate nutrition, and shelter that protects them from inclement weather and is of sufficient size to allow them to engage in normal behavior. The Lowes were recently found in contempt after months of noncompliance with court orders requiring the Lowes, in part, to employ a qualified veterinarian and establish and maintain a program of veterinary care that meets the requirements of the Animal Welfare Act.