Photo: Artist Enrique Gomez De Molina Arrested for Using Endangered Animals to Make Odd Taxidermy Art
A shall we say “creative” taxidermist/artist is facing up to five years in jail and a hefty fine for importing bits and pieces and well as full bodies or protected or endangered animals.
Enrique Gomez De Molina of Miami Beach, Florida is said to have sold his sculptures as much as $80,000 each, problem is, his art was made using endangered animals.
De Molina had smugglers bring him a king cobra, orangutan skulls, pangolins, hornbills, and a number of animals skins and cadavers in order to create his pieces.
His work combines taxidermy, activism, and art. He says is sculptures, which are basically various animals put together to make unique (and stuffed) hybrid species, are meant to bring awareness to dangers of genetic engineering.
Law enforcement don’t see it his way however, and he was arrested for trafficking protected wildlife.
After the U.S. attorney for southern Florida said De Molina knew he was breaking the law when he failed to get permits for the animals parts, even having smugglers wrap them in carbon paper to conceal them. He has pled guilty and is scheduled to be sentenced on March 2, 2012.
The artists faces up to five years in prison and fines totaling $250,000.