4" tort law?

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chase thorn

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I am pretty confused... How do people obtain a tort under 4" from for example, Tortoise supply or Arizona tortoise compound? How does this work. I am wanting... ok, NEEDING another tortoise, But do state laws come in play or is it totally cool if it's not a business like Petco.
 

dmmj

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It is a federal law that a turtle or tortoise under 4 inches can't be sold by a business unless for educational or scientific purposes.Oh wait loophole, private breeders can sell them, and also the law is not enforced for the most part. State law can't circumvent federal law, I personally am 100 percent against this law since it was made for very stupid reasons.
 

Jacob

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Its illegal for anyone to sell these reptiles as a pet if they are under 4 inches.
But guess what, most sellers only care about money and will break this law, at stores i will see this posted
just in case the cops or feds come in, but they will sell them as pets if you ask.
 

Madkins007

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There is some misinformation being accidentally passed on here.

1. It is illegal to buy, sell, or collect turtle eggs or turtles under 4" long COMMERCIALLY. There is no law against this as a hobby ((b) Sales; general prohibition. Except as otherwise provided in this section, viable turtle eggs and live turtles with a carapace length of less than 4 inches shall not be sold, held for sale, or offered for any other type of commercial or public distribution.)

2. The 'educational or private purposes' bit does not say what many people think it does. it actually reads "(d) Exceptions. The provisions of this section are not applicable to:
(1) The sale, holding for sale, and distribution of live turtles and viable turtle eggs for bona fide scientific, educational, or exhibitional purposes, other than use as pets.
(2) The sale, holding for sale, and distribution of live turtles and viable turtle eggs not in connection with a business.
(emphasis mine) Note- 'bona fide' means you better have documentation that proves you are a zoo, lab, or something like that if the feds come asking.

I point this out because many people have buyers sign a form saying that the pet they are buying is for display purposes- thus making the buyer perjure themselves.
 

bigred

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chase thorn said:
Ok This is good :) I wasnt sure... Tyler is awesome and I plan on getting a tort from him pretty soon!

I got my redfoot female Bigred from tyler quite a few yeard ago. When he found out that she had grown up to be such a cool egg laying tort he was wishing he had kept her. They seem to be great people with good quality animals.

As far as the 4 inch tort law goes, As far as I know its not enforced at all. Most people that have torts to sell just want to sell them
 

dmmj

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It is enforced just not often, the CTTC gets hundreds, sometimes thousands of confiscated RES babies every year.
 

Zamric

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dmmj said:
It is enforced just not often, the CTTC gets hundreds, sometimes thousands of confiscated RES babies every year.

I'm sure that most of those are incidental fallout from Law Enforcment doing thier jobs in other areas (Drug Bust, Auto Strip lots, Homicide investigations...ect.) Can you imagine the flood of Turts and Torts on the CTTC if there was a focused view on this law?
 

StudentoftheReptile

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Its a joke law, plain and simple. Hardly enforcable and like Zamric said, most confiscations are incidental. There's no turtle police going around to every pet store, herp expo, flea market, etc, where I always see these baby turtles available. Enough exceptions and limited ability to enforce makes it abundantly easy for millions to own baby chelonians without fear of legal repurcussions.
 

terryo

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That's exactly what it is....a joke. Go to China Town in Manhattan. There are venders standing on each side of the Ferry Terminal selling tiny RES. My daughter-in-law came home with two in a tiny plastic tank. $5.00. You can also go to any Koi store there and they usually have them in tanks in back rooms. Although if you look like a tourist, and ask them if they have any, they will tell you it's against the law. The know about the law, but it doesn't matter. Iguana's are also illegal to sell here, but you can get them too. There are "back rooms" in many pet stores, and of course you can get anything on line now.
(OT....you can also get some great "fakes" (designer handbags) there too.....but that's another story)
 

StudentoftheReptile

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Yeah, we have a flea market here with a couple vendors that more or less does the same thing. They sell you a $10 ziplock bag of turtle food (adult turtle pellets bigger than a baby RES' head, BTW) and a little Kritter Keeper, and you "adopt" the baby turtle for free. Been doing it for years. :(
 

WingedWolfPsion

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Madkins007 said:
I point this out because many people have buyers sign a form saying that the pet they are buying is for display purposes- thus making the buyer perjure themselves.

I'm not sure. Is it illegal to sign a paper saying something, if it is not a legal document? I will note that the law does not say it is illegal to BUY a turtle under 4" as a pet--it's only illegal for a business to SELL one. I don't believe that paper actually represents much protection for the business, as it's their responsibility to ensure the animal is being sold to a genuine educational institution.

I can't see how the person buying it would be in any trouble. I think perjury only applies to legal, binding documents. If it were to go to court, the customer could simply say 'Yes, I lied about that'...and that should be the end of it, because lying to buy a 4" turtle is not illegal the way the law is written right now. If they admit to lying, they can't be charged with perjury. Anyone with legal training can correct me if I'm wrong, please.

I think what it would come down to is, what is the extent of a business's obligation to verify that their customer is a legitimate educational institution, etc? If there is no limit on that obligation, the business would still be fined.

Also, keep in mind that a business cannot distribute the animals, either--so giving them to a hobbyist to sell would also be illegal, and so is the trick with selling the food, and giving the turtle away for free.

It's a big risk for a business to take, but as has been pointed out, enforcement of this law isn't exactly vigorous.
 

Yvonne G

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Hi WingedWolfPsion:

Won't you take a few moments to start a new thread in the "introductions" section and tell us a bit about yourself?
 

jaizei

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WingedWolfPsion said:
Madkins007 said:
I point this out because many people have buyers sign a form saying that the pet they are buying is for display purposes- thus making the buyer perjure themselves.

I'm not sure. Is it illegal to sign a paper saying something, if it is not a legal document? I will note that the law does not say it is illegal to BUY a turtle under 4" as a pet--it's only illegal for a business to SELL one. I don't believe that paper actually represents much protection for the business, as it's their responsibility to ensure the animal is being sold to a genuine educational institution.

I can't see how the person buying it would be in any trouble. I think perjury only applies to legal, binding documents. If it were to go to court, the customer could simply say 'Yes, I lied about that'...and that should be the end of it, because lying to buy a 4" turtle is not illegal the way the law is written right now. If they admit to lying, they can't be charged with perjury. Anyone with legal training can correct me if I'm wrong, please.

I think what it would come down to is, what is the extent of a business's obligation to verify that their customer is a legitimate educational institution, etc? If there is no limit on that obligation, the business would still be fined.

Also, keep in mind that a business cannot distribute the animals, either--so giving them to a hobbyist to sell would also be illegal, and so is the trick with selling the food, and giving the turtle away for free.

It's a big risk for a business to take, but as has been pointed out, enforcement of this law isn't exactly vigorous.

I think you've got it. The onus is completely on the seller to verify that the tortoise is being bought for one of the exempted purposes. I believe it has been expressed by the FDA that asking a buyer to sign such a paper doesn't relieve the seller of culpability. The seller is supposed to require actual proof (credentials, etc.)
 
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