HOUSTON, Texas–53-year-old Carlos Delgado Rodriguez of Dallas, Texas is accused of transporting approximately 60 dead hummingbirds from Mexico to the U.S. He apparently smuggled the birds with the intent of selling them.
An indictment obtained by Breitbart Texas states that there are five charges against Rodriguez, including smuggling and the sale of wildlife taken in violation of U.S. law. The document said, “In the Eastern District of Texas and elsewhere, [Rodriguez] did knowingly engage in conduct that involved the sale of wildlife, with a market value in excess of $350.00.”
The Dallas man smuggled several types of rare birds, according to court documents, including the ruby-throated hummingbird, the black-chinned hummingbird, and the violet-crowned hummingbird.
By allegedly Rodriguez broke both federal and state laws.
The indictment said, “The Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) makes it unlawful for any person to knowingly sell, offer for sale, barter or offer to barter any migratory bird without a permit unless otherwise provided by the regulations.”
A report by the Associated Press (AP) stated that if found guilty, Rodriguez faces up to 20 years behind bars.
According to the AP, it is unclear at this time why, exactly, Rodriguez believed he could make a profit on the dead birds. There is no indication that anyone was interested in purchasing them.
Follow Kristin Tate on Twitter @KristinBTate.