Pet monkey at center of Brown’s legal troubles
It goes without saying that Chris Brown is no stranger to legal troubles, from accusations of assaulting women, including Rihanna, to brawling with fellow entertainers such as Drake or being subject to probation and restraining orders.
Now the singer is in trouble for something that last year raised the ire of animal lovers and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Brown, 29, was caught owning a capuchin monkey for which he didn’t have a permit.
TMZ reported Thursday that the Los Angeles City Attorney has charged Brown with two misdemeanor counts of having a restricted species without a permit, crimes serious enough that they carry a maximum sentence of six months in jail. Brown is due in court on Feb. 6.
Brown actually incriminated himself in December 2017 when he posted a video to Instagram showing his 3-year-old daughter Royalty cuddling the monkey, named Fiji.
Fish and Wildlife Capt. Patrick Foy told USA Today in January that the video prompted a half- dozen calls from people concerned about the girl’s safety and the monkey’s welfare. State agents launched an investi- gation and served a search warrant at Brown’s home to retrieve the animal.
Brown wasn’t home when agents visited, but he agreed to cooperate and had employees hand over the monkey in a cage. Fiji was taken and housed at an undisclosed facility.
Capuchin monkeys, native to Central and South America, are among a long list of restricted animals under California state law. That means it’s illegal to import, transport or possess these species without a permit issued by the Fish and Wildlife department.
Capuchins, often weighing less than 10 pounds, are considered among the most intelligent of the Western Hemisphere monkeys. They also are “charming” as babies and need to be cared for like human babies, according to The Spruce Pets.
According to Primarily Primates, a nonprofit refuge in Texas for non-native wild animals, capuchins and other primates often are abandoned by private owners who can’t take care of them.
U.S. federal quarantine laws forbid importing nonhuman primates as pets, while California and other states ban private possession of them without a permit, Primarily Primates reported.
Pop singer Chris Brown was caught owning a capuchin monkey for which he didn’t have a permit.