THE owner of a zoo near Sotogrande has been arrested in a Guardia Civil operation involving sales of protected species.
He and another man from Ronda have been charged with fraud, document forgery and trafficking with protected species, and are believed to have sold hundreds of primates, marsupials and exotic birds over the past years.
The Guardia Civil Nature Protection Service began investigating last month when they were informed that a man in Badajoz had a Capuchin monkey in his home which he had bought on the internet.
It was sold to him by the Ronda man with documents which were not valid for private ownership. It was found that he was given the animals by the zoo owner who certified that they had been born at the zoo to get the documents to keep them.