Police rescue 72 puppies brought illegally into Italy
Three men charged with animal abuse in two separate incidents19 February, 18:01
In the first of the two incidents, police stopped a van late Sunday near Bologna and found a cargo of some 72 puppies of various breeds, originating from Slovakia and destined for Salento, in Italy's south.
Vets consulted by police determined that the animals were too young to take on such a long trip and so the police charged the two Italian drivers with animal abuse, among other offences.
In a second incident, another five puppies - all Maltese - were found in the trunk of a car with Slovak plates.
These animals also were found without identifying documents.
The Italian driver was also charged with animal abuse and violating import rules, among other offences.
All the animals have been temporarily housed in specialized facilities.