Criminals who devastate world's wildlife face light penalties in U.S. courts

The Washington Times

A Florida rattlesnake rustler facing five years in prison for illegally trafficking protected snakes told a former business associate that they could get off easy if they handled matters right, according to recordings by federal agents. The itch by Robroy MacInnes was stunning. He told the unidentified man, a customer for the illicit skins, that if they stuck together, they could avoid any serious consequences. MacInnes said he had spent a quarter-century trafficking and had never spent a day in jail. The worst punishment heā??d ever received was two years' probation, and he didnā??t even have to pay a fine. He promised his customer that there was a "99 percent chance" he would get only probation too, if he didn't flip. "The judge who deals with rapists and murders and stuff and then you're a guy in there who is saying, 'You know, yeah, I made a mistake. I bought these rattlesnakes I wasn't supposed to.' The judge is going say, 'F-inā?? snakes, I mean what are we talking about here?" MacInnes said, according to court papers.