(MARATHON) – Florida men always know how to turn a buck.
Yoankis Hernandez Pena, 38, and Andres Leon Valdes, 45, were arrested after being accused of kidnapping an endangered Key deer.
The deer was found in their truck during a traffic stop in Marathon over the weekend.
DEER KIDNAPPING ARREST – Police arrested two South Florida men Sunday after a live Key deer was found in their truck. https://t.co/8pBeHwQxAe
— WPLG Local 10 News (@WPLGLocal10) July 24, 2022
According to sources, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office stopped a blue Chevrolet that was not staying in its lane.
Law enforcement then noticed an injured Key deer in the back of the vehicle.
The men are charged with cruelty to animals and taking, possessing or selling a federally designated endangered or threatened species.
When questioned, the men claimed they “struck the Key deer on U.S. 1 north of the Seven Mile Bridge” and initially thought “it was dead,” according to the report.
The men stated that when they realized “the deer was still alive, they decided to take it to a veterinarian in Miami for treatment.”
Valdes and Pena confessed to placing the injured key deer in the vehicle and were then arrested.
Staff Writer, Julianna Caban, contributed to the story.