4
| Animals |

Meet Jesus Hernandez, Fort Lauderdale's Unsuspecting, Unauthorized Monkey Salesman

^
Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of South Florida and help keep the future of New Times free.

When a young man came to Jesus Hernandez's Fort Lauderdale home the other day to buy the marmoset monkey he'd been advertising online, he thought he was going to get $2,700 and say so long to 1-year-old Rafiki.

Instead, Hernandez tells New Times that the man identified himself as a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission agent, arrested him, and charged him with several misdemeanor crimes for illegally selling the monkey.

The problem, unbeknown to Hernandez, was that a permit is required to sell monkeys in Florida.

Hernandez had just posted this advertisement on backpage.com -- a classifieds website owned by New Times' parent company, Village Voice Media -- a few days before the FWC agent showed up to his place:

Friendly, Fun, easy to take care of, just put it on your shoulder and you can even take it out in public and its pet friendly we have cats and the monkey has no problem with them. I am selling the monkey because I just dont have time to spend with it along with the fact that I have been traveling alot there is no special diet for it it eats fruits vegetables almost anything. Asking $2700.00 but may negotiate. Contact me via email with Monkey in the subject line or call me

He says he purchased the monkey from a breeder in Pembroke Pines about a year ago and says the breeder told him he didn't need a license to buy the monkey.

Now Hernandez says he's cooperating with detectives to find said breeder, because she wouldn't be allowed by law to sell the monkey to anyone without a license.

Hernandez claims the breeder told him he needed a license only if he were to use the monkey for show, which he had no plans of doing.

He's facing some heavy fines for the misdemeanor charges when he has his court date in August, but he hopes they'll understand he had no idea about the necessity of a permit.

Hernandez says he's spent around $4,000 on Rafiki -- including all of his food and enclosure -- since buying him a year ago, so paying for the $50 permit wouldn't have been a problem if he'd known about it.

He says owning the monkey hasn't caused any problems for him over the past year -- except one incident in which he says his ex-girlfriend stole the monkey but eventually gave it back -- and he was just trying to do the right thing.

"I was just trying to finding the monkey a good home," Hernandez says. "It's a good monkey; it gets along with everybody."


Follow The Pulp on Facebook and on Twitter: @ThePulpBPB.


Keep New Times Broward-Palm Beach Free... Since we started New Times Broward-Palm Beach, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering South Florida with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in South Florida.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in South Florida.